EurWORK European Observatory of Working Life


EurWORK articles cover working life in Europe, in particular the fields of industrial relations and working conditions. The articles are based on quarterly reporting provided by the Network of Eurofound Correspondents.

  • Topical updates summarise and update developments around selected topics, which are relevant across a number of Member States at the same time
  • Spotlight reports cover in more depth country-level events, debates and changes in regulation related to working life, aiming to provide a balanced view of all parties’ positions
  • Research in Focus articles report on important research findings (including surveys) from the national level, often, but not exclusively, in the area of working conditions
  • In brief articles are short news items drawn from the correspondents' quarterly reports
  • Country updates summarise developments at national level and are published 4 times a year

549 items found
  • Agreement safeguards more than 900 jobs at tyre plant

    In March 2013, Bridgestone Europe [1] announced the closure of its car tyres plant in the southern Italian town of Modugno near Bari, in a region already suffering from high unemployment. The plant is owned by Bridgestone Italia [2]. The company said it was struggling to compete with low-cost imports because of high logistics and energy costs. The shutdown threatened the loss of 950 blue-collar jobs. [1] [2]
  • Collective agreement in construction sector finally renewed

    On 10 July 2013, unions and employer organisations in Luxembourg’s construction industry agreed to renew a sectoral collective agreement which covers about 14,000 people.
  • Job security and stability are key factors sought by unemployed

    The State Employment Agency (NVA [1]) in Latvia has released the results of its study Flexicurity in the Labour Market and The State Employment Agency’s Role in Implementing the Concept of Flexicurity in Latvia’s Labour Market (1.38MB PDF, in Latvian) [2]. [1] [2]
  • Constitutional court rejects latest austerity measures

    For the third time since Portugal was bailed out by the Troika – the International Monetary Fund (IMF [1]), the European Commission (EC [2]) and the European Central Bank (ECB [3]) – a government austerity bill has been rejected by the country’s Constitutional Court [4]. [1] [2] [3] [4]
  • Zero hours contracts in the spotlight

    The absence of any general legal regulation of working time in the UK, together with employers’ freedom in contract formation, provides the context for a variety of forms of flexible working hours. A long-running political debate in the UK has focused on the use of so-called zero hours contracts. This type of contract allows an employer to keep staff on standby and offer no guaranteed work or predictable levels of pay (*UK1306049I* [1]). Discussions have been ongoing about the extent and effects of zero hours contracts. During August 2013, a series of high profile developments meant that the issue continued to generate media headlines. [1]
  • Survey reveals impact of long hours on well-being

    The work and employment relations survey (2011 WERS [1]) is published by the UK government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills [2] and is the sixth in a series of studies carried out on work and employment in the UK. It covers wide-ranging issues from collective bargaining coverage to working time and productivity. [1] [2]
  • Union calls for limit on ‘all-in’ employment contracts

    A recent survey by the Institute for Empirical Social Studies (IFES [1]) looked at the provision of ‘all-in’ contracts in Austria. Under this type of contract, the agreed salary is intended to cover employees for any overtime worked. Generally an ‘all-in’ contract would include a lump sum to cover any extra hours. [1]
  • New working time model for retail sector

    A new working time model for people who work on Saturdays in Austria was unveiled on 8 July 2013. The alternative to existing Saturday work rules was proposed by social partners, along with the commerce section of the Federal Economic Chamber (WKO [1]) and the Union of Salaried Employees, Graphical Workers and Journalists (GPA-djp [2]). [1] [2]
  • Improved rights for part-time workers

    The Norwegian Parliament has strengthened the rights of employees who involuntarily work part time because they cannot find a full-time job. The legislation, which makes it easier for part-time workers to increase their working hours, will come into force on 1 January 2014.
  • Bus company cuts lead to industrial action

    In June 2012, Ireland’s state-owned national bus service provider, Bus Éireann [1], which employs around 2,700 people, announced that it needed to make savings of €9 million by 2013. As part of its business recovery plan, the company proposed the elimination of overtime, shift and rota allowances, with other expense payments to be reduced by 60–70%. [1]