LBST 309: Labour and Collective Bargaining

This research guide provides an overview and starting guidance to research for LBST 309: Labour and Collective Bargaining.

Contact info

 For Library research help, please contact Moninder Lalli, Liaison Librarian for Labour Studies by email or Yolanda Koscielski, Librarian for Criminology ( by email.

You may also find this guide to be helpful: Canadian Labour Rights

Research process

Start Your Research Here - This page gives you an overview of the research process, or in other words how to find materials for your essay.

Selected encyclopedias, handbooks and textbooks

Use encyclopedias, dictionaries and handbooks to obtain definitions and overviews of a topic and also to identify key authors.  These source may also include a reference list that could lead you to valuable resources on your topic.

Further sources of background information are available on the Labour Studies Information Guide.

Tip:  Check out the Further Reading lists at the end of each encyclopedia entry for citations to key works on that topic!

Labour standards and labour code

Labour in Canada is regulated by federal or provincial legislation. The jurisdiction depends on the specific business or industry.

Federally regulated businesses and industries include banks, marine shipping, air transportation, railway and road transportation, telephone, telegraph and cable systems, radio and television broadcasting, businesses dealing with many First Nation activities, private businesses necessary to the operation of a federal act, and most federal Crown corporations. For a full list, click here.

Provincial law sets out the minimum standards that apply in most workplaces in each province. For British Columbia, click here for guidelines to evaluate whether the business or industry that you are examining is covered by provincial jurisdiction.

  • British Columbia Employment Standards Act - the provincial legislation that ensures that employees in British Columbia receive at least basic standards of compensation and conditions of employment. The British Columbia Employment Standards Act and Regulation sets out minimum working conditions for all employees covered under provincial labour laws. A number of sectors or industries in British Columbia are subject to specific regulations that only apply to them. Click here to see the regulations for specific industries.
  • British Columbia Labour Relations Code - the provincial legislation that protects the right of employees in British Columbia to be a member of a trade union and to participate in its lawful activities. The Code further delineates the rights of employees and employers.
  • Canada Labour Code - consolidates federal statues that relate to labour, facilitating production by controlling strikes & lockouts, occupational safety and health, and some employment standards. The Code only applies to the industries which are under federal legislation.
  • Canada Labour Standards Regulation - federally consolidated regulations related to respecting hours of work, wages, annual vacations, general holidays, reassignment, maternity leave and parental leave, bereavement leave, group and individual termination of employment and severance pay, work-related illness and injury in federal works, undertakings and businesses

Find legal cases, laws and legislation, and journal articles

Selected legal databases

  • Westlaw Next Canada - Federal and provincial Canadian laws, legislation, regulations, cases, and commentary. Contains the databases BestCase Library, CriminalSource, and LawSource.
    • Start with Canadian Encyclopedic Digest to obtain overviews of topics.
  • CanLII: Canadian Legal Information Institute (OPEN ACCESS) -  Canadian case law and statutes. Includes federal, provincial, and territorial material.
  • HeinOnline - Law and law-related research material, including legal journals, government documents, classic legal treatises, and world trials. Contains Canadian, American and international laws and agreements.
  • LawSource - Canadian legislation, case law, and law reports, as well as legal journal articles and commentary.
  • Lexis Nexis - Full-text database containing comprehensive information in the areas of news, government, business, and law from newspapers, journals, reports, cases, and patents from the early 1970s to the present. Content is strongly American with significant coverage of Canadian and international topics.
  • Negotech (OPEN ACCESS) - Database of recent Canadian collective agreements.

For more, try the Law databases guide

Journal articles from non-legal databases

Databases let you easily to search for articles from within scholarly journals for a discipline.

If the full-text of the article is not available within the database then use the "Get@SFU" link to find it or to initiate an inter-library loan request.

  • Business Source Complete (BSI) - Covers all areas of business, including labour and management.  It contains a large collection of scholarly business journals, industry magazines, industry & market reports, and other business information resources. Use this version if you need additional browsing features focused on finding specialised business publication types such as SWOT analyses and company profiles.
  • CBCA Complete - Stands for Canadian Business and Current Affairs -- Comprehensive Canadian periodical collection for reference and current events. Publications include scholarly journal articles, trade publications, dissertations, books, newspapers and magazines.
  • Canadian Electronic Library from desLibris - Canadian health and public policy documents, and Canadian e-books. Includes three major components: Canadian Health Research, Canadian Public Policy documents, and fiction and non-fiction e-books from Canadian publishers.
  • Canadian Research Index - Canadian government publications. All documents found in the database are available in the Microlog microfiche collection (JL 044 37) on the Sixth Floor of the Bennett Library. Individual reports are filed by the MICROLOG NUMBER.
  • America: History and Life - Literature on all aspects of U.S. and Canadian history, culture and current affairs from prehistory to present. Access is limited to 6 users at a time.
  • Sociological Abstracts - Abstracts and indexes the international literature in sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences. The database provides abstracts of journal articles and citations to book reviews drawn from thousands of serials publications, and also provides abstracts of books, book chapters, dissertations, and conference papers.
  • Social Sciences Full Text - Provides access to a wide assortment of the most important English-language social science journals. Social Sciences Full Text includes full-text articles from hundreds of journals, covering the latest concepts, theories and methods from both applied and theoretical aspects of the social sciences.
  • Academic Search Premier  - This scholarly collection includes critical information from a broad range of disciplines, including political science and public administration, language and literature, communications, business administration, biological and medical sciences, computer sciences, engineering, education and history.
  • Historical Abstracts - Indexes literature on the history of the world since 1450 except for the United States and Canada.

Tip: Check for email, export and search history options in each database!

Selected journals and blogs

Check out these blogs for commentary on labour law in Canada

If you have a reference (citation) for a book or journal article from another source, you can also use this tool to locate a copy: From Citation to Article

Find books

Library Search is a quick and easy tool to find books, encyclopedia entries, journal articles, newspaper articles, etc.

SFU Library Catalogue Search

Use the Library Catalogue to find materials owned by SFU. The catalogue makes it easy to search SFU books and resources using either the Simple Keyword Search or the Advanced Keyword Search.

Search for Topics Using Key Words

Ex. participation of Canadian women in trade unions

Other topics:

Proper syntax for Boolean logic (words that allow you to combine concepts)

Combine different concepts using AND
Combine same concepts using OR
Use quotation marks to search for a phrase
Use brackets for synonyms
Use asterisk (*) for different endings of words

Note:  For Catalogue Search, when combining concepts, use CAPITAL letters ( "OR", "AND")

Look at the titles in the "results list" and for those books that look relevant, click on their subject headings to find more books on that topic.

Selected books

Find books by subject

Browse by Subject    (change the default "title" to "subject").  Browse by Subject will only result in books, not book chapters or journal articles.

If you have found one book that is particularly relevant to your research, but need more, search that book in the library catalogue and use the subject headings associated with that book!

Style guides & citations

  • Writing and Style Guides (SFU Library) - provides tips on citation and writing at the university level. Topics covered include: writing annotated bibliographies, book reviews and preparing and submitting your thesis. There are also guidelines on citing uncommon material such as images and statistical data.
  • Understanding and Avoiding Plagiarism - An interactive tutorial produced by SFU Library explaining what constitutes plagiarism and how to avoid it in your writing.

Library guides

Presentation skills

Writing help

See the Student Learning Commons for expert and friendly help with academic writing, learning, and study strategies.