A December 1997 ruling by the European Court of Justice has declared that the
Italian state's monopoly of job placement services is contrary to the
principles of free competition, and is therefore illegitimate. The judgment
comes at a time when the job placement system is being reformed in Italy, and
is therefore likely to accelerate the move towards the greater liberalisation
of labour market mediation in the country.
The Association of Finnish Lawyers has rejected the new national incomes
policy agreement, which was approved by AKAVA, the confederation to which it
belongs, on 12 December 1997. The Association believes that pay for state
lawyers is well below that for equal work in the private sector
The Danish Confederation of Trade Unions (Landsorganisationen i Danmark, LO)
celebrates the 100th anniversary of its creation in 1998. The celebration
will be most noticeable through a wide range of cultural and union activities
unfolding throughout the year (which will be reported in subsequent EIRO
records), and here we take the opportunity to look at recent developments in
LO's organisation, membership and political links.
In the past decade, Ireland has developed a system of social participation
which plays a major role in the conduct of economic and social policy. This
approach began in 1987, with a three-year agreement  between the
Government, the trade union movement, employers and agricultural interests.
This lifted the country from the deep economic and social crisis of the 1980s
and facilitated a return to growth. That agreement was followed by three
further social partnership programmes, the latest of which is /Partnership
2000/ (IE9702103F ). These agreements determine the growth of pay in both
the public and private sector, but also embody a negotiated approach to a
wide range of economic and social policies. The consensus which underpinned
these agreements was, to a large extent, developed in the National Economic
and Social Council (NESC), a deliberative body in which the social partners
and senior civil servants undertake analysis and discussion of strategic
issues. Following agreement on the strategic priorities, negotiation of the
programmes was undertaken in a separate body, the Central Review Committee,
which also monitors the implementation of the programmes.
The Spanish trade unions and employers' organisations which signed the
important labour market reform agreements in April 1997 (the "April
agreements") have carried out a review of their results over the first six
months, which was published in January 1998. The social partners agree in
general that the results are positive, but have reservations on some points.
A collective agreement on working time was concluded in the construction
industry on 9 August 1996. Although it became effective retroactively from 1
July 1996, its first impact was felt only in 1997. The main aim was to reduce
the industry's reliance on the national unemployment insurance system though
workers being laid off during the winter, and to distribute the cost of doing
so between enterprises and employees. It is now possible to make a first
assessment of the deal's effects.
In 1992, the Municipal Workers' Union (Kommunalarbetareförbundet) and the
Swedish Association of Local Authorities (Kommunförbundet) agreed to change
the collective agreement on pensions then in force, with the effect that the
pensioners did not receive the benefits they had counted on (SE9709136F ).
A former sheet-metal worker, Knut Törling, sued his former employer, the
City of Stockholm, claiming in all SEK 7,794, plus interest on overdue
payment. Mr Törling argued that pension rights are the workers' acquired
rights which a trade union cannot dispose of without a special authorisation
from each member concerned, and he had never given such an authorisation to
the Municipal Workers' Union. Therefore the City of Stockholm could not
invoke the new collective agreement against him.
A report on the service offered by the Greek public administration, released
in January 1998, contains proposals aimed at achieving greater efficiency,
greater responsibility amongst public servants, better management of the
workforce and a better response to citizens' needs.
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.
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.
Platform work – the matching of supply of and demand for paid labour through an online platform or app – is gaining increasing importance in Europe. It has attracted policy attention due to its inherent opportunities and challenges. Across Europe, initiatives have been introduced by governments, social partners and grassroots organisations aimed at harnessing the potential and reducing the risks of this employment form. The areas covered include regulation, representation, advice and information provision, as well as measures addressing social protection, ratings and training.
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.