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German Bender

Senior Research Associate

German Bender is chief analyst at the think tank Arena Idé in Sweden and an affiliated researcher at the Stockholm School of Economics where he received his PhD in 2024 with the dissertation Organizing the Labor Market: Power, Ideas, and Institutions in Wage Formation, Digital Automation, and Migration. During spring term of 2023, he was a visiting research fellow at the CLJE at Harvard. 

His research focuses on how the main stakeholders in industrial relations systems (unions, employers, and the state) organize and regulate the labor market and wider society, in order to solve common or individual challenges. Some examples of such challenges are competitiveness, productivity, real wage growth, inflation, labor peace, and algorithmic or AI systems that are being increasingly implemented in the workplace. In particular, he has studied how these and other problems have been addressed through sectoral bargaining and various forms of regulation in the Swedish industrial relations system for the past three decades.  

German Bender has more than 15 years of professional experience working in or close to the Swedish union movement and has held senior positions at the Swedish Confederation of Professional Employees (TCO), the Swedish Trade Union Confederation (LO), and Arena Idé.