The International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF), with the support of
the European Transport Workers' Federation (ETF) have organised for 5 October
1999 a repeat of the day of action they held in September 1998 (EU9809127F
) under the banner /Fatigue kills/. The aim of the "international road
transport action day", in which over 100,000 drivers worldwide were due to
participate, was to highlight the health hazards to drivers and the general
public of excessively long working hours. The protest was intended to
underline the trade unions' demands for the limitation of working time to a
maximum of 48 hours per week in line with International Labour Organisation
Convention No. 153 on hours of work and rest periods (road transport) ,
through adoption of legislation at national level in each country. In Europe,
unions are demanding the implementation of European Commission proposals 
to legislate to limit working hours in road transport to an average of 48
hours per week (EU9901144F ). Working time negotiations between ETF and
the International Road Transport Union (IRU) had broken down in September
1999 (EU9809127F ).
In October 1999, the Health and Safety at Work Act (HASAWA) is 25 years old.
At the time of its adoption in 1974, the HASAWA was hailed as a landmark
piece of legislation that brought 8 million mainly public service workers
within the scope of the law and stimulated greater interest in health and
safety amongst employers and trade unions. Although the UK's health and
safety record compares favourably with most other EU countries, anniversary
celebrations are muted. There is a growing sense that the existing regulatory
framework is ill-adapted to the changing labour market of the late 1990s.
Whilst employers are anxious about whether they are complying with health and
safety requirements, employees and trade unions express concern about the
relatively few prosecutions for health and safety offences and the low levels
of fines imposed on employers when breaches of the HASAWA are proven.
In September 1999, a new national collective agreement for the Italian
commerce sector was signed. The agreement's provisions include: wage
increases; a working time reduction linked to flexibility; new part-time work
regulations; and new sickness and maternity leave regulations.
In August 1999, a new coalition government took office in Luxembourg,
following the general election in June. The change of administration is
unlikely to herald any fundamental change in direction as regards employment
law, though the new government will seek to encourage capital- and
profit-sharing by employees. There will also be a review of civil servants'
In September 1999, French MP Catherine Génisson submitted a report on
equality between women and men at work, commissioned by the Prime Minister.
The report, entitled "More mixing in the labour market for greater equality
between men and women", advocates various measures to ensure "real equality."
Since 1994, the first stage of reforming and gradually privatising the
federal railway system in Germany has been implemented. This has included the
transformation of the federal railways in eastern and western Germany into a
public company, Deutsche Bahn AG (DB), and its reorganisation into several
divisions free to operate competitively in the transport market under their
own responsibility. On 9 September 1999, DB presented a /Report on personnel
and social issues, 1994-8/ (Personal- und Sozialbericht 1994-8) which
describes important industrial relations and employment developments.
In September 1999, Greece's GSEE trade union confederation presented a
proposal calling for higher unemployment benefits. Despite legislative
provisions that the daily rate of benefit should not fall below two-thirds of
the average level of unskilled workers' wages, it is now worth less than
The Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank, two of Ireland's largest banks, have
concluded deals with the Irish Bank Officials' Association (IBOA) trade union
on special "Millennium payments" for time worked on Millennium eve, 31
December 1999, and the subsequent weekend. While the payments are largely
aimed at information technology (IT) staff required to monitor the computer
problems associated with the year 2000 "Millennium bug" (whereby some
computers will be unable to deal with the change in date), they will apply to
any non-IT staff who may also be needed. These are the among first agreements
of significance to be negotiated in the Republic in advance of the Millennium
weekend (IE9905279N ).
Over August and September 1999, trade unions and employers aired their views
on Spain's forthcoming state Budget for 2000. Employers' proposals included a
call for a cut in social security contributions, while employers focused on
issues such as unemployment cover and pension increases. The government has
largely maintained its positions, though apparently some concessions will be
In September 1999, the Dutch Minister of Social Affairs opened the door to
allowing individuals seeking asylum in the Netherlands to participate in the
labour market, and the State Secretary of Justice is to present a plan for an
adapted collective agreement to cover asylum-seekers. Small and medium-sized
employers and the temporary agency work sector supported this idea, pointing
to current labour shortages. The central employers' organisation, VNO-NCW,
and the liberal VVD party, which is a member of the governing coalition, are
opposed to asylum-seekers participating fully in the labour market.
The European Restructuring Monitor has reported on the employment impact of large-scale business restructuring since 2002. This series includes its restructuring-related databases (events, support instruments and legislation) as well as case studies and publications.
The European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) launched in 1990 and is carried out every five years, with the latest edition in 2020. It provides an overview of trends in working conditions and quality of employment for the last 30 years. It covers issues such as employment status, working time duration and organisation, work organisation, learning and training, physical and psychosocial risk factors, health and safety, work–life balance, worker participation, earnings and financial security, work and health, and most recently also the future of work.
Eurofound’s Flagship report series 'Challenges and prospects in the EU' comprise research reports that contain the key results of multiannual research activities and incorporate findings from different related research projects. Flagship reports are the major output of each of Eurofound’s strategic areas of intervention and have as their objective to contribute to current policy debates.
Eurofound’s work on COVID-19 examines the far-reaching socioeconomic implications of the pandemic across Europe as they continue to impact living and working conditions. A key element of the research is the e-survey, conducted in two rounds – in April and in July 2020. This is complemented by the inclusion of research into the ongoing effects of the pandemic in much of Eurofound’s other areas of work.
Eurofound’s European Company Survey (ECS) maps and analyses company policies and practices which can have an impact on smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, as well as the development of social dialogue in companies. This series consists of outputs from the ECS 2019, the fourth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2004–2005 as the European Survey on Working Time and Work-Life Balance.
Eurofound's representativness studies are designed to allow the European Commission to identify the ‘management and labour’ whom it must consult under article 154 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). This series consists of studies of the representativeness of employer and worker organisations in various sectors.
This series reports on and updates latest information on the involvement of national social partners in policymaking. The series analyses the involvement of national social partners in the implementation of policy reforms within the framework of social dialogue practices, including their involvement in elaborating the National Reform Programmes (NRPs).
This series reports on the new forms of employment emerging across Europe that are driven by societal, economic and technological developments and are different from traditional standard or non-standard employment in a number of ways. This series explores what characterises these new employment forms and what implications they have for working conditions and the labour market.
The European Company Survey (ECS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2004–2005, with the latest edition in 2019. The survey is designed to provide information on workplace practices to develop and evaluate socioeconomic policy in the EU. It covers issues around work organisation, working time arrangements and work–life balance, flexibility, workplace innovation, employee involvement, human resource management, social dialogue, and most recently also skills use, skills strategies and digitalisation.
The European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2003, with the latest edition in 2016. It examines both the objective circumstances of people's lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. It covers issues around employment, income, education, housing, family, health and work–life balance. It also looks at subjective topics, such as people's levels of happiness and life satisfaction, and perceptions of the quality of society.
How can working conditions be improved to make work more sustainable over the life course? This question has been the guiding principle for analysis of the 2015 European Working Conditions Survey data during the period of Eurofound’s work programme for 2017–2020. This flagship report brings together the different research strands from this work and gives a comprehensive answer to the question. It includes an analysis of trends in working conditions, examining whether these are the same for all workers or whether inequalities between different groups of workers are increasing.
Access to key social services, especially education and healthcare, as well as stable family life and decent housing are necessary for the well-being and development of children. Ensuring that all children have these resources is an EU priority; the European Commission is currently undertaking to recommend a Child Guarantee to address the situations of children in need. Service provision has been complicated by the COVID-19 outbreak, however, and the pandemic has put psychological and material strains on families.
This report builds on Eurofound's existing research on social mobility, assessing the distribution and transmission of wealth in Member States. It examines the roles of inheritance and household debt in explaining the transmission of advantage or disadvantage between the generations across Member States. The analysis is based on Eurosystem's Household Finance and Consumption Survey (HFCS).
This report analyses the involvement of the national social partners in the implementation of policy reforms within the framework of social dialogue practices, and their involvement in elaborating the National Reform Programmes (NRPs) and other key policy documents of the European Semester cycle.
This report will focus on assessing the employment impact of the COVID-19 crisis, including its effects across sectors and for different categories of workers. It will also be looking at measures implemented to limit negative effects following the Coronavirus outbreak in Europe.
This report examines the contribution of social and employment services in EU Member States to the inclusion of people with disabilities, specifically in relation to the impact these have on labour market integration – in line with the 2006 UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The report includes a discussion of the costs and benefits of different approaches.
This report examines people's optimism about the future, for themselves and for others, and the extent to which it varies depending on one's social situation and perceptions of the quality of society. The study includes an analysis of the relationships between people’s perceptions of fairness and objective indicators of their social and economic situation and living standards.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the civil aviation (flight crew) sector. Their relative representativeness legitimises their right to be consulted, their role and effective participation in the European sectoral social dialogue and their capacity to negotiate agreements.
The European Green Deal is at the very top of Member State agendas across the EU. This topical update maps the national discussions – in policy, public and research debates – on the potential, ongoing or already felt impact on work and employment of the transition to a low-carbon economy. It attempts to identify the most active actors involved in these discussions (governments, social partners, NGOs and so on) and their perspectives.
This report will draw from case studies of establishments across the EU that have introduced advanced digital technologies in the workplace. The technologies in focus are the Internet of Things, 3D printing and virtual and augmented reality. Each case study – illustrated in the report - will explore the approach or strategy taken by the establishment to manage the digital transition and the impact of the deployment of the technology on the work organisation and job quality.