Open main menu

Page:Economic Development in Denmark Before and During the World War.djvu/80

This page has been validated.
64
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN DENMARK

incorporated by the inferior or local organizations in their agreements. The rules thus became the basis for the decisions of the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

Besides this Permanent Court created for the settlement of legal disputes, provision was made at the same time for the settlement of disputes over conflicting interests by a State Arbitrator, appointed by the Home Office after nomination by the Permanent Court of Arbitration. If the State Arbitrator considers the dispute to be of great importance for the organizations concerned he may on his own initiative, or at the request of one of the contending parties, call them together for a discussion of the matter in his presence; and they are bound to obey his summons. In endeavouring to conciliate the parties the Arbitrator, after consulting representatives of the central organizations, makes conciliatory proposals. The method of appointing a State Arbitrator, confirmed by a subsequent act, has proved most satisfactory, and many large and small disagreements have been satisfactorily settled in this way. Some cavillers may contend that equally good results might have been attained without a State Arbitrator. There can be no doubt, however, that a person of social prominence, supported by an act of Parliament, possessed of a thorough understanding of both the legal and the psychological aspects of the dispute, and backed by the authority of the Home Office, is in a position to effect a happier decision for everyone concerned than could be arrived at in any other way. Moreover, the experience of such a person in each new case will increase the value of his decision in the next. Certain it is, at all events, that state arbitration has become an established feature of our industrial life, so much so that neither party would willingly have it abolished.

General Results of Social Legislation

Many changes have taken place in little Denmark during the past generation in the relation of the state to the individual, as well as in the relations between certain classes of