The issue of the rehabilitation of workers who have become incapacitated has
been the subject of a number of special commissions in recent years, and on 3
June 1999 another commissioner - Gerhard Larsson, the former head of Samhall,
a governmental rehabilitation organisation - was asked to study and analyse
the situation. Since 1992, the main responsibility for the rehabilitation of
employees has been placed on employers, and several changes have been made to
the regulations since then. For example, the rules on the costs of
rehabilitation and sick leave have been altered, as has the system for
cooperation between employers and the local social insurance office and other
authorities. In August 1998, a government committee proposed a clarification
of employers' responsibilities (SE9810114F ).
In two rulings issued on 30 June 1999, the Norwegian Supreme Court endorsed
the right of employees in some cases to avoid being transferred to a new
employer, when the enterprise is transferring support functions to another
employer (outsourcing). Both cases related to the outsourcing of defined task
areas with few employees, one concerning a switchboard operator and the other
three cleaners. The employees who brought the cases wanted to retain their
employment with the original employer. They claimed that employees have a
legal right to choose whether to work for the new employer or maintain
employment with the original employer.
On 1 July 1999, a reform of Spanish legislation on temporary employment
agencies was passed. Among other provisions, this gives temporary agency
workers the same pay as employees of the user companies in which they work,
and has brought severe criticism from the sector's employers' association.
The ICTU's two-yearly conference held in Killarney on 6-8 July 1999 reflected
the widespread positive mood in Ireland due to the country's enormous
economic growth of recent years. It is clear, however, that major challenges
lie ahead for the trade unions, not least regarding the negotiation of an
agreement to replace Partnership 2000  (P2000) (IE9702103F ), the
current national programme which runs from January 1997 to March 2000.
Should people who run their own businesses be allowed to become a trade union
member? The Swedish Union for Technical and Clerical Employees (Svenska
Industritjänstemannaförbundet, SIF) answered yes to this question when, in
1996 its congress decided, after a very lively debate, to allow union
membership for the self-employed. Opponents saw the decision as a breach of
the fundamental trade union principle of looking after workers' interests in
relation to their employer. They also pointed out the risks of internal
conflicts - situations where employees in a company might be competing with
external self-employed people for the same job.
Norwegian ground staff employed by Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) have
resorted to industrial action against the airline's plans to improve company
earnings by means of outsourcing approximately 7,000 employees in Norway,
Sweden and Denmark. Since 14 July 1999, members of the "SAS Personnel Club"
(SAS Personalklubb) have refused to work extra overtime, which is a legal
option under the Norwegian Working Environment Act.
A reform of the rules on overtime working has been pending in Spain since the
social partners and the government made a commitment in this area in 1997.
However, there has still been little progress, with the 1999 National Action
Plan on employment, issued in May 1999, containing no measures to reduce and
reorganise working time.
/It seems inevitable that increasing economic integration and competition
within Europe will have some influence on national collective bargaining. The
aim of this comparative study is to provide an assessment, as of summer 1999,
of the extent to which the processes and outcomes of bargaining in the 15
Member States of the EU, plus Norway, are developing a cross-border, European
dimension. The study outlines the diverse processes, both implicit and
explicit, which can be said to be leading towards a "Europeanisation" of
collective bargaining. Developments across the 16 countries concerned are
examined at intersectoral, sectoral and enterprise levels, with a special
focus on metalworking and financial services, and the views of the social
partners are summarised./
Some 70% of chairs of company boards and 60% of managing directors, in a
sample of 660 Swedish companies with more than 25 workers, have a positive
attitude towards employee representatives on the boards of companies. This is
among the findings of a survey, released on 5 July 1999, commissioned by the
Swedish Trade Union Confederation (Landsorganisationen i Sverige, LO) and the
Federation of Salaried Employees in Industry and Services
(Privattjänstemannakartellen, PTK), which represents 1.2 million members of
white-collar trade unions. The survey, entitled /The representation of
employees on company boards/ (Anställdas representationi företagsstyrelser)
was carried out by Klas Levinsson, a researcher at the National Institute for
Working Life (Arbetslivsinstitutet, ALI). No larger studies on the subject
have been conducted since the end of the 1970s.
Early summer 1999 had seen a number of disputes breaking out in the transport
sector, with commentators believing that Austria potentially faced a summer
of disruption on the roads and in the air (AT9906150F ). This had failed
to materialise by late July.
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, launched in April 2020, with five rounds completed at different stages during 2020, 2021 and 2022. 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 representativeness 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 developments in minimum wage rates across the EU, including how they are set and how they have developed over time in nominal and real terms. The series explores where there are statutory minimum wages or collectively agreed minimum wages in the Member States, as well as minimum wage coverage rates by gender.
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.
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.
Given that compliance with lockdown measures is a first line of defence against COVID-19, maintaining trust in institutions is vital to ensure a coordinated, comprehensive and effective response to the pandemic. This report investigates developments in institutional and interpersonal trust across time, with a particular emphasis on the COVID-19 pandemic period and its impact. It examines the link between trust and discontent and investigates the effect of multidimensional inequalities as a driver of distrust.
This paper provides an analytical summary of state of the art academic and policy literature on the impact of climate change and policies to manage transitions to a carbon neutral economy on employment, working conditions, social dialogue and living conditions. It maps the key empirical findings around the impact of climate change and the green transitions on jobs, sectors, regions and countries in Europe, identifying the opportunities and risks that climate change policies bring to European labour markets.
Between 2021 and 2023 Eurofound is carrying out a pilot project on minimum wage on behalf of the European Commission. The question of how minimum wages and other forms of pay can be fixed for the self-employed is investigated as a part of this project through mapping national and sectoral approaches. Out of concern for the challenging conditions that the self-employed face, some Member States have established or are discussing establishing statutory forms of minimum pay for certain categories of self-employed.
The civil aviation sector has been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is one of the most severe crises the sector has ever experienced, giving rise to a number of significant challenges for companies and workers alike. This study will explore the role of social dialogue and collective bargaining in how the sector is adapting to the pandemic. What kinds of changes have been introduced, either through social dialogue or collective bargaining? Are the changes temporary or permanent?
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 report provides an overview of the scale of teleworking before and during the COVID-19 crisis and gives an indication of ‘teleworkability’ across sectors and occupations. Building on previous Eurofound research on remote work, the report investigates the way businesses introduced and supported teleworking during the pandemic, as well as the experience of workers who were working from home during the crisis. The report also looks at developments in regulations related to telework in Member States and provides a review of stakeholders’ positions.
The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have varied across sectors, occupations and categories of worker (for instance, according to gender, age or employment status). Hours worked have declined the most in sectors such as accommodation services and food and beverage services, and in occupations heavily reliant on in-person interaction, such as sales work. At the same time, it’s in these sectors that labour shortages have become increasingly evident as labour markets have begun to normalise.
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.
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 European sectoral social dialogue taking place at cross-sectoral level. 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 at cross-sectoral level in the EU Member States.