Industrial Relations Center
University of Hawaii at Manoa

2550 McCarthy Mall, Hamilton A254A Honolulu, Hawaii 96822 Tel. (808) 956-8132 Fax (808) 956-3609

IRC Mission

The IRC's mission is to promote understanding of labor-management problems, techniques, and policies; and to provide for labor, management, and the community sources of information in the field of industrial relations.

Originally established in the College of Business Administration, the IRC is now an independent organized research unit at UH Manoa. The value of the IRC's neutral position was aptly described in 1970 by J. B. Ferguson, former Director of the IRC, when he said that having separate education programs for labor and management ...tends to perpetuate the polarization between management and labor by emphasizing the differences between them rather than emphasizing their mutual interdependence in today's world. Techniques for easing and avoiding conflict seem to be of greater importance, given present laws and existing attitudes, than do techniques which perpetuate antagonism....

Over the years, the IRC has established a reputation as an impartial and trusted resource agency in the highly adversarial field of labor-management relations in both the public and private sectors.

National Affiliation

The IRC is a member of a national organization of professionals in the industrial relations field called the Labor and Employment Relations Association (LERA), as well as its Hawaii Chapter. LERA was previously known as the Industrial Relations Research Association (IRRA), and the Hawaii Chapter of LERA has maintained the IRRA designation. As a service to the industrial relations community, the IRC provides administrative services to the IRRA-Hawaii Chapter.


Harold S. Roberts Director 1948-1970


John B. Ferguson Director 1970-1978


Joyce M. Najita Director 1978-Present