Collective bargaining is still the main vehicle for labour worldwide to negotiate wages, benefits, retirement policies, training and other terms of working with management in both the public and private sectors. Labour economists have long been active in modelling the relations between collective bargaining agreements, labour markets, and social welfare conditions. This book presents a new theoretical model of unions which offers a unified treatment of the centralization of bargaining, the credibility of labour contracts, the unionization of labour markets and the relative bargaining power of the union. Part I of the book develops the microfoundations of bargaining and examines collective bargaining interacting with public policy, investment and growth, and international trade and specialization. In conclusion Professor Palokangas challenges the commonly held view that collective bargaining has a negative impact on economics welfare, and argues that with the existence of market failure, collective bargaining can be welfare enhancing.