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  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    Total membership of the world's largest sectoral free trade union, the German
    metalworkers' union, IG Metall, stood at 2.7 million on 31 December 1997, a
    fall of 960,000 (or 27%) since 1991. For the first time since German
    unification, annual membership figures have now fallen below the 1989
    pre-unification level, when IG Metall existed in western Germany only. The
    1991 post-unification net growth of 897,675 members ( 33%) has thus melted
    away. The development of IG Metall's membership is examined in a new report
    from the Institute of the German Economy (Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft,
    IW) - "Rücksturz auf 1989 - Zur Entwicklung der IGM-Mitgliedszahlen 1997", W
    Pege, in IW-Gewerkschaftsreport 1/98 (forthcoming). The table below provides
    details of changes in membership levels since 1989.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    The UK - then led by a Conservative Government - was one of two European
    Union (EU) Member States (along with Denmark) that decided to "opt out" of
    the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) which was agreed as part of the
    Maastricht Treaty on European Union of 1992. The third stage of EMU,
    involving a single currency - the euro - is due to get underway at the
    beginning of 1999.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    On 3 February 1998, the Danish Association of Professional Technicians
    (Teknisk Landsforbund, TL) publicly announced its intention to seek a shift
    from a 37-hour working week with overtime payments for any additional hours
    to a fixed monthly salary (known as joblønor "job-salary"), whereby
    technicians would not receive overtime payments for working more than 37
    hours per week.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    A month-long dispute over industrial restructuring hit Spain's publicly-owned
    coalmining companies in December 1997-January 1998. The dispute arose
    following the Government's amendments of agreements reached in May 1997,
    following the release of a critical report by the European Commission. A
    satisfactory settlement was eventually reached on 27 January 1998.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    Teleworking (fjernarbeidor telependling) is becoming an issue of increasing
    importance on the agenda of the Norwegian social partners. Home-based
    teleworking is the main focus of attention. Although the level of home-based
    telework activity has remained relatively constant in the last 10 years, it
    is expected to increase in the future. The existing statutory provisions, as
    well as collective agreements, are regarded by many as inadequate for this
    type of work, and home-based teleworking in particular seems to be completely
    unregulated. A declaration on teleworking has been incorporated into the new
    Basic Agreement between the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions
    (Landsorganisasjonen i Norge, LO) and the Confederation of Norwegian Business
    and Industry (Næringslivets Hovedorganisasjon, NHO), which was formally
    ratified in February 1998. The legal state of affairs in relation to
    teleworking is also undergoing scrutiny, and the likely outcome is amendments
    to the 1977 Working Environment Act.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    Among the conclusions of the special European Council Employment Summit [1]
    held in Luxembourg in November 1997 (EU9711168F [2]) was a requirement for an
    action plan on employment, based on the European Commission's guidelines, to
    be drawn up in each European Union Member State.


  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    While current sectoral agreements in Belgium favour the redistribution of
    work, a variety of companies have been adopting novel approaches to the
    reduction of working time in agreements signed in late 1997 and early 1998.

  • Article
    27 februar 1998

    At the beginning of February 1998, the media reported that the 56-year-old
    managing director of the Stora forestry company, who was about to leave his
    job after six years, would receive a "golden handshake" (or severance
    package) worth SEK 58 million. In the first two years following his
    resignation, he would receive SEK 2.8 million and from the age of 60 a large
    pension. What made the information conspicuous, apart from the large sum, was
    that the managing director was said not to have been dismissed but to have
    left on his own initiative, and that his terms of resignation had been
    renegotiated and improved shortly before he had made his decision.


  • COVID-19

    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.

  • Sectoral social dialogue

    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.

  • Minimum wages in the EU

    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.  

  • European Working Conditions Surveys

    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.

  • European Restructuring Monitor

    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.

  • Challenges and prospects in the EU

    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.

  • European Company Survey 2019

    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. 

  • National social partners and policymaking

    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).

  • New forms of employment

    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.

  • European Company Surveys

    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.

Forthcoming publications