The issue of legislating against discrimination on grounds of ethnic origin
in working life has been debated in Sweden for the last 30 years, but it was
not until 1994 that the first law was enacted. To the very last, even one of
the trade union confederations asserted that collective agreements, not
legislation, were the appropriate means of combating discrimination.
At the February 1998 plenary session of the European Parliament, the
representative of the current UK Council Presidency, Douglas Henderson
confirmed that the Council of Ministers and the European Commission had no
plans to review the decision to end intra-EU duty-free sales (EU9711166N
). This was despite claims made by representatives of the ferry and
airport industry and trade unions in these sectors that the loss of up to
140,000 jobs may result from the decision. The decision to end duty-free from
1999 was taken over seven years ago by the Council of Ministers in 1991, as
one of the taxation and excise measures to make the single market a reality.
On 16 February 1998, the president of the Public Services, Transport and
Traffic Union (Gewerkschaft Öffentliche Dienste, Transport und Verkehr,
ÖTV), Herbert Mai, stated in an interview that in the long run there is no
alternative to an extensive reduction of working time in order to solve the
unemployment problem. For Mr Mai, the introduction of the 30-hour week could
be an important step towards halving unemployment in Germany. In the public
services sector alone, a weekly reduction of one hour in working time would
have an "arithmetical employment effect", producing 135,000 new jobs. At the
moment, weekly working time in public services is 38.5 hours in western
Germany and 40 hours in eastern Germany.
The third conference of female trade unionists in the Greek General
Confederation of Labour (GSEE), held in February 1998, has highlighted the
serious lack of representation and participation of women in trade union
bodies in Greece.
In February 1998, the UGT trade union confederation signed the second general
collective agreement for the Spanish construction sector, over three months
after it was signed by the CC.OO union confederation and the CNC employers'
organisation, thus ending the bargaining deadlock in the industry.
The new collective agreement for white-collar workers in Luxembourg's iron
and steel industry, signed in January 1998, includes an overall pay increase
of 1.85% spread over two years and ratifies an existing profit-sharing
On 22 February 1998, negotiations between the Confederation of Danish
Industries (Dansk Industri, DI) and the Central Organisation of Industrial
Employees in Denmark (Centralorganisationen af Industriansatte i Danmark,
CO-industri) broke down. The DI/CO-industri bargaining unit covers some
210,000 workers in industry, or some 62% of all the employees whose
collective agreements are due to be renewed by 1 March 1998. The norm-setting
effect of the agreement in industry is estimated to affect agreements
covering an additional 100,000 workers. As other bargaining units in the
private sector await the outcome of the negotiations in the industrial
sector, the breakdown in talks meant that a major conflict across the whole
private sector could have broken out on 2 March 1998, the day after the
current agreements expire.
Trade unions in the state-owned aircraft maintenance company, TEAM Aer
Lingus, are considering a management offer to buy out employment guarantees
made to workers who transferred over from the former maintenance and
engineering division of the parent company in 1990. The guarantees are in the
form of individually signed "letters of comfort" and state that the workers
formally remain as employees of Aer Lingus"as if TEAM did not exist"
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.
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 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.
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.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the textiles and clothing 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.
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. A fifth round of the e-survey is planned for March–May 2022, with initial findings available in July.
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 COVID-19 pandemic triggered an extraordinary level of provision of social services across the EU. Healthcare and care providers carried much of the burden and, together with essential services, played a crucial role in getting citizens through the crisis. This report explores how public services adapted to the new reality and what role was played by the digital transformation of services. The aim is to contribute to the documentation and analysis of changes in funding, delivery and use of healthcare and social services during the pandemic.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the professional football 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 professional football sector in the EU Member States.
With the expansion of telework and different forms of hybrid work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for policymakers to consider both the opportunities and the negative consequences that may result. This report will explore potential scenarios for such work. In doing so, it will identify trends and drivers, and predict how they might interact to create particular outcomes and how they are likely to affect workers and businesses. Policy pointers will outline what could be done to facilitate desirable outcomes and to avoid undesirable ones.
The urban-rural divide in EU countries has grown in recent years, and the depopulation of certain rural areas in favour of cities is a challenge when it comes to promoting economic development and maintaining social cohesion and convergence. Using data from Eurofound and Eurostat, this report will investigate the trends and drivers of the urban-rural divide, in various dimensions: economic and employment opportunities, access to services, living conditions and quality of life.
Building on previous work by Eurofound, this report will investigate intergenerational dynamics over time. During the 2008 double-dip recession, worrying intergenerational divides appeared in many Member States, and while some of the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is universal, early data suggests disparities across demographic cohorts. Eurofound will examine how different age groups may have been affected in terms of their health, labour market participation, quality of life and financial needs, both in the short term and in the long term.