On 27 May 1999, negotiators for the Federation of Salaried Employees in
Industry and Services (Privattjänstemannakartellen, PTK) - the bargaining
cartel for white-collar workers' unions in the private sector - announced
that they could not accept a final offer from the Swedish Employers'
Confederation (Svenska arbetsgivareföreningen, SAF) on a new "contribution
pension" agreement. This agreement would have replaced the existing agreement
on the supplementary pension scheme for salaried employees in industry and
services (Industrins och handelns tilläggspensionför tjänstemän,ITP). The
negotiations over a new collective agreement on the ITP had been continuing
on off for almost five years, since 1994, and they failed because the trade
unions could not come to an understanding among themselves. Two of the
leading unions within PTK, representing more than half of the 620,000
employees covered by the ITP scheme, refused to accept. The other 26 unions
within the cartel decided, after long discussions, to follow this refusal,
although they had initially accepted the offer. The dissenting unions were
the Union for Technical and Clerical Employees in Industry (Svenska
Industritjänstemannaförbundet, SIF) and the Association of Management and
Professional Staff (Ledarna).
An agreement on teleworking was concluded in June 1999 between the
state-owned Norwegian oil company Statoil and the Norwegian Oil and
Petrochemical Workers Union (Norsk Olje- og Petrokjemisk Fagforbund, Nopef).
On 20 July 1999, the government decided to finance the training of up to
4,000 young people, if they cannot find training places with employers in
1999-2000. This is the same allocation as for 1998-9 (AT9803175N ), when
3,600 young people were placed - 2,100 in 10-month training courses and 1,500
in three-year "apprenticeship-foundation" courses. Training course
participants must have a ninth-grade school-leaving diploma (the ninth grade
is around 15 years of age) and receive about half the regular apprentice's
remuneration, while foundation course participants have not usually completed
the ninth grade and receive three-quarters of the normal apprentice's
Statistics presented in June 1999 and produced by Statistics Sweden
(Statistiska Centralbyrån) in cooperation with the Swedish National Board
for Industrial and Technical Development (NUTEK), show a 9% fall in the
establishment of new companies between 1997 and 1998. In 1998, a total of
33,860 new companies were started, compared with 37,040 in 1997. For the
preceding years, the corresponding figures were: 1996 - 36,010; 1995 -
35,000; and 1994 - 34,670. The new companies created 55,200 new jobs in 1998,
of which 26,000 were full-time jobs, the statistics also show. The equivalent
figures for 1997 were 63,000 new jobs and 32,300 full-time jobs. The
reduction has been most evident in the northern counties of Sweden - 22% in
Gävleborg, 20% in Västernorrland and 16% in Västerbotten. The statistics
are based on genuine new start-ups involving the establishment of new
activities. The statistics do not include changes of ownership or of legal
status, or other restructuring.
The dispute between the Scandinavian Airlines Systems (SAS) and its ground
staff was resolved after a meeting between management and trade union
representatives on 9 August 1999 in Stockholm, Sweden. On 14 July 1999,
Norwegian ground staff who are members of the SAS Personnel Club (SAS
Personalklubb) had resorted to industrial action, and refused to work
overtime, in protest against the airline's possible plans to increase company
earnings by means of outsourcing approximately 7,000 jobs in Norway, Sweden
and Denmark (NO9907143N ). More SAS employees joined the strike on 27
Since 1998, all EU Member States are obliged to draw up annual National
Action Plans (NAP s) for employment (EU9805107N ) based on the EU's
Employment Guidelines. Member States submitted NAPs for 1999 during summer
1999, analysing implementation of the 1998 Plans and describing the policy
adjustments made to incorporate the changes introduced by the 1999 Employment
Guidelines  (EU9810130F ). Austria is no exception (AT9802164F ) and
its 1999 NAP  was issued in June 1999.
A report entitled Survey evidence on wage rigidity and unemployment: Sweden
in the 1990s  was presented on 29 June 1999. The study is based on two
surveys, one conducted in 1991, the other in 1998, aiming to explore among
managers from 157 companies in the Swedish manufacturing industry how a
severe macroeconomic shock affects wage rigidity and unemployment. The
research was carried out by two economists, Jonas Agell and Peter Lundborg,
and funded by the Swedish government's Office of Labour Market Policy
Evaluation (Institutet för arbetsmarknadspolitisk utvärdering, IFAU). In
1998, when the second survey was conducted, the unemployment rate was much
higher and the inflation rate much lower than when the first survey was
carried out in 1991.
Negotiations between the Swedish Road Transport Employer's Association
(Biltrafikens Arbetsgivarförbund, BA), and the Swedish Transport Worker's
Union (Svenska Transportarbetareförbundet, Transport) over a new collective
agreement for taxi drivers and taxi telephone exchange operators finally
failed on 8 August 1999. On 17 August, Transport gave notice to the taxi-cab
companies of a blockade of all passenger traffic, including related work at
the taxi telephone exchanges, to and from the largest Swedish airports -
Arlanda and Bromma (Stockholm), Landvetter (Gothenburg) and Sturup (Malmö).
If the subsequent mediation process is not successful, the blockade was due
to start in the night of 2-3 September 1999. At the time of writing (late
August) nothing had been reported so far on the work of the two mediators.
In July 1999, the Finnish social partners reached an agreement on some major
reforms to early retirement and pensions. These reforms, together with the
programme for older workers and the third stage of a scheme to fund adult
training out of unemployment insurance, aim to increase the average
retirement age step by step.
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 three rounds – in April and July 2020 and in March 2021. This is complemented by the inclusion of research into the ongoing effects of the pandemic in much of Eurofound’s other areas of work.
The European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) launched in 1990 and is carried out every five years, with the latest edition in 2015. 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.
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.
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 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.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the gas 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 aim of this Eurofound’s study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the gas sector in the EU Member States.
This report analyses how working conditions, job quality and working life outcomes – such as work–life balance, health and well-being, and sustainability of work – changed between February 2020 and spring 2021. Following up on responses to the European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) 2020, it explores the differences between three distinct groups of workers: those teleworking during the COVID-19 pandemic, those who continued to work on their employers' premises as frontline staff, and those who were furloughed or worked reduced hours.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the food and drinks 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 aim of this Eurofound study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the food and drinks sector in the EU Member States.
The COVID-19 crisis has increased inequality between social groups in health, housing, employment, income and well-being. While a small part of society was able to hold on to or increase its wealth, other groups such as women, young people, older people, people with disabilities, low- and middle-income earners and those with young children were acutely affected by the pandemic. Drawing on current research on how to best measure multidimensional inequality, this report highlights recent trends in inequality in the context of the COVID-19 crisis.
Lockdown measures and the economic shift following the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a widening of the gender divide between men and women, putting at risk some of the gender equality gains that had been made in previous years. This report analyses changes in the distribution of paid and unpaid work, along with care and domestic responsibilities, among men and women during the crisis. It also explores the impact of the pandemic on the well-being of women and men.
The financial services sector is pertinent for studying the impact of digitalisation, as the main ‘raw material’ of the sector is digitally stored and processed. Process automation in the sector is likely to lead to significant job losses over the next 10 years, as the high street bank presence declines and the online bank presence increasingly accounts for a higher share of overall activity. Such trends have already been identified in bank restructurings captured in Eurofound’s European Restructuring Monitor.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the electricity 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 aim of this Eurofound study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the electricity sector in the EU Member States.
This report offers a backward look at the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the work and life of Europeans. The main focus is on Eurofound’s e-survey ‘ Living, working and COVID-19’ which was launched on 9 April 2020 just after the onset of the crisis. Through four rounds of the survey (two in 2020 and two in 2021), the range of questions changed to match the evolving situation and to understand the effects on the everyday lives of citizens and workers.
This report explores the drivers of economic and social convergence in Europe, using a selected set of economic and social indicators to examine trends in the performance of individual Member States. It also investigates what role the Economic and Monetary Union plays in convergence, particularly in southern and eastern Member States. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on convergence is analysed and initial conclusions are drawn about the impact of EU recovery packages and their ability to prevent divergence.
The use of artificial intelligence, advanced robotics and the Internet of Things technologies in the workplace can bring about fundamental changes in work organisation and working conditions. This report analyses the ethical and human implications of the use of these technologies at work by drawing on qualitative interviews with policy stakeholders, input from the Network of Eurofound Correspondents and Delphi expert surveys, and case studies.