28 October 2015
Since the beginning of 2015 a number of major collective agreements at national, sectoral and cross-sectoral level have been renewed, renegotiated, or under discussion. Several of the examples presented here are from the countries that have been hit hardest during the crisis and/or in which collective bargaining has been most affected, such as Croatia, Ireland, Slovenia, Spain or Greece. It is too early to speak about a reversal of the trend in collective bargaining in general; however, some tentative optimism may be justified.
27 October 2015
This article presents some of the key developments and research findings on aspects of public sector pay and collective bargaining in the EU during the third quarter of 2015. Its main focus is a growing trend of restored pay levels in public sector agreements. It also deals with the broadening scope of such agreements and discusses evidence that some governments want to introduce more flexibility in pay-setting.
13 July 2015
The Maternity Leave Directive (92/85/EEC) is concerned with improvements in the safety and health at work of women who are pregnant, have recently given birth or who are breastfeeding. This report finds that nearly all Member States comply with the directive’s provision of granting at least two weeks’ mandatory maternity leave before and/or after childbirth; a majority exceed this requirement.
The future of social dialogue, tripartitism and bipartism: Collective employment relations - Q4 2014 (EurWORK topical update)
05 March 2015
This article presents some of the key developments and research findings on EU-level developments in collective employment relations during the final quarter of 2014. Social dialogue structure and process reforms are the main focus of this report.
18 February 2015
This article presents some of the key developments and research findings on aspects of dispute resolution in the EU between the first and third quarters of 2014. Changes in the EU Member States’ collective and individual dispute resolution mechanisms are the main focus. The section on 'Extensions of rights of association and right to strike' for Ireland was updated in February 2018.
18 February 2015
In the recent past, the policy debate around wage setting – both at European and the national level – has reflected the view that wages should better reflect differences in productivity developments. This article provides an overview of related debates in a number of Member States in 2014. By and large, there seems to be some ‘convergence at the level of debates’: with reflections about the possible introduction of universal minimum wages in some of those Member States with collectively agreed minima, while Member States that already have a statutorily set wage floor are considering different ways of introducing more differentiated minima. This would eventually move them closer to the prevailing system in the first set of Member States as regards the setting of wages at the lower end of the wage distribution.
02 February 2015
Most EU Member States have a statutory minimum wage which sets the lowest legal amount of pay for all employees (some also have specific lower minimum levels for certain groups of workers, mainly younger ones). Germany joined this group of countries on 1 January 2015. This has triggered some debate in those countries which have minimum wage levels set within collective agreements. The implementation and enforcement of the German legal minimum wage will have impacts not only at national level but even, as already seen through the discussions raised in the road transport sector, at pan-European level, especially with regard to the posting of workers. This article presents the most recent data on statutory minimum wages, applicable on 1 January 2015 (see table), and an overview of the discussions leading to the final settlements made in 2014.
16 January 2015
This report describes the main developments in industrial relations and working conditions in 2013 in the 28 EU Member States and in Norway, from both a national and EU-level perspective. Beginning with an overview of the current economic and political context in these countries, the report goes on to outline trends in industrial relations, including changes in the role and organisation of the social partners and the impact of government measures and legislation.
13 April 2014
The issue of wages has attracted particular attention at European level since the onset of the economic crisis. Changes in economic governance, notably within the European semester, have prompted discussions on wage‑setting mechanisms. While, overall, wage‑bargaining regimes have remained relatively stable over time in many countries, the most substantial changes were seen in Member States facing more difficult economic circumstances. This report provides comparative time series on wage‑bargaining outcomes across the EU Member States and Norway, discussing pay developments against the background of different wage‑bargaining regimes and looks into the link between pay and productivity developments. It also investigates the different systems and levels of minimum wages in Europe at present, carrying out an accounting exercise through a hypothetical scenario of a minimum wage set at 60% of the median national wage (with some alternative scenarios as well for comparison) in order to benchmark and evaluate minimum wage levels and systems in Europe, and to discuss the possibilities and difficulties of coordination in this matter.
29 January 2013
This paper looks at wages from two different angles: from the perspective of individual employees, discussed in conjunction with their working conditions, and from the perspective of the industrial relations system. After a brief overview of EU-level policy developments with a potential impact on national level pay determination, this report gives a comparative overview of the levels of collective wage setting and how they are set throughout Europe and goes on to report on reforms, changes or debates linked to these processes between the different actors at both the Member State and the European level in 2011 and 2012. See related publications on wages.