Conducts research and collects data on the global history of labour, workers, and labour relations

An Old Trade Union in Sri Lanka and a Brand New One in Nepal

Nowadays, the main field in which the Institute acquires collections is labour, and its various aspects. The IISH’s collections in this field are global in scope. A number of recent acquisitions in Asia are fine examples of this policy.

The first, acquired at the end of 2015, is the archives of the Ceylon Mercantile, Industrial and General Workers’ Union. , generally known as the Ceylon Mercantile Union (CMU), founded in 1928 and one of the largest commercial trade unions in Sri Lanka. The CMU was led by its General Secretary Bala Tampoe from 1948 until his death in 2014. For more information click here

The second acquisition, acquired in 2010 and made accessible in 2015, is the collection of the General Federation of Nepalese Trade Unions (GEFONT). GEFONT was founded in 1989 and today has twenty member organizations. With its banners, flags, and T-shirts this collection is highly diverse and colourful and in itself constitutes something of a museum exhibition on these trade union organizations. For more information click here


Bouwe Hijma

29 March 2016