In April 1991, German employers stated their support for European
integration, the single market, and a reasonable social dimension. Following
the June 1997 Amsterdam summit and the related Treaty changes (EU9707135F
) as well as in face of the coming Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), the
Confederation of German Employers' Associations (Bundesvereinigung der
Deutschen Arbeitgeberverbände, BDA) published its current positions
regarding European social policy in spring 1998 ("EuropäischeSozialpolitik -
Die Perspektive der Arbeitgeber, BDA, Cologne (1998)). This feature
summarises the BDA statement.
The revised national Budget for 1998 was made public by the Norwegian
Government on 15 May 1998. The Government is concerned about the present
overheating in the economy, and proposes that employers must set aside 2% of
paybill as well as paying a larger share of the cost of sick pay benefits.
Findings from a recent national workplace survey of workplace change in
Ireland stand in stark contrast to popular claims of the widespread diffusion
of new working practices and initiatives which facilitate employee
"empowerment". The findings suggest that new work structures are very much a
minority practice in Irish companies. In comparison to other European
countries, Ireland lags some way behind and, as a consequence, many Irish
companies are not reaping the economic benefits which accompany the
introduction of these new initiatives.
In May 1998, the regional Government and the main Catalan employers'
organisations and trade unions signed the /Pact for employment in Catalonia./
This is the first employment pact at regional level that has been signed
following the November 1997 EU Employment Summit, and the first of its kind
ever reached in Catalonia.
At the special Jobs Summit  in Luxembourg in November 1997 (EU9711168F
), EU Member States agreed to a set of Employment Guidelines  designed
to provide a framework for national action under four main headings -
employability, adaptability, entrepreneurship and equal opportunities.
National governments were asked to draw up National Action Plans (NAP s) on
employment by 15 April 1998, and to give the social partners the opportunity
to make a specific input into the Plan on those aspects of the
"employability" and "adaptability" guidelines which give them a direct role.
National governments were also expected to consult the social partners about
the Plan as a whole and make appropriate arrangements for their views to be
incorporated. Member States' NAPs will be considered by the Cardiff European
Council meeting in June 1998.
April 1998 saw the outbreak of a number of industrial disputes in the federal
civil service and in recently privatised former state agencies, involving
teachers, judges, post office staff and railway workers.
International organisations vary in their estimates of the numbers involved
in child labour worldwide. The World Bank reckons that there are some 250
million children aged five to 14 who have to work, while the International
Labour Organisation (ILO) calculates the number of working children as being
close to 120 million. Whatever the exact figures, more than 100 countries are
currently preparing a proposed new ILO Convention and Recommendation  on
child labour which should be concluded at its 1999 Conference.
Following numerous debates, France's National Assembly made the decision in
April 1998 to allow unemployed associations to take part in new local liaison
committees attached to the agencies for training and placement of unemployed
people. However, the Assembly did not approve an amendment which provided for
representation of unemployed people within the UNEDIC unemployment insurance
In May 1998, an "agreement on the maintenance of the production location and
employment" (Standort- und Becshäftigungssicherungsvertrag) was concluded at
the pharmaceuticals producer, Hoechst Marion Roussel (HMR) Germany. The deal
was signed by the company, its group works council, the mining chemical, and
energy workers' trade union IG BCE (IG Bergbau, Chemie, Energie), the
salaried employees' trade union (Deutsche Angestelltengewerkschaft, DAG), the
association of salaried academics and managers in the chemical industries
(Verband angestellter Akademiker und leitender Angestellter in der chemischen
Industrie, VAA), and the Hessen chemical employers' association.
On 14 May 1998, the bargaining parties in the banking sector finalised a new
collective agreement for the period 1998-2000. The agreement was concluded
between the Finance Sector Union of Norway (Finansforbundet), which is
affiliated to the Confederation of Vocational Unions (Yrkesorganisasjonenes
Sentralforbund, YS), and the Norwegian Bank Employers' Association (Bankenes
Arbeidsgiverforening, BAF). The new agreement awards a general pay increase
of 4.1%, and no employee will receive an increase of less than NOK 10,000 per
year. In addition, there will be local pay increases at company level.
Approximately 20,000 people are covered by the banking sector agreement .
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.
The European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) launched in 1990 and is carried out every five years, with the latest edition in 2020. 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.
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 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 two rounds – in April and in July 2020. 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 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.
The European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2003, with the latest edition in 2016. It examines both the objective circumstances of people's lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. It covers issues around employment, income, education, housing, family, health and work–life balance. It also looks at subjective topics, such as people's levels of happiness and life satisfaction, and perceptions of the quality of society.
Access to key social services, especially education and healthcare, as well as stable family life and decent housing are necessary for the well-being and development of children. Ensuring that all children have these resources is an EU priority; the European Commission is currently undertaking to recommend a Child Guarantee to address the situations of children in need. Service provision has been complicated by the COVID-19 outbreak, however, and the pandemic has put psychological and material strains on families.
How can working conditions be improved to make work more sustainable over the life course? This question has been the guiding principle for analysis of the 2015 European Working Conditions Survey data during the period of Eurofound’s work programme for 2017–2020. This flagship report brings together the different research strands from this work and gives a comprehensive answer to the question. It includes an analysis of trends in working conditions, examining whether these are the same for all workers or whether inequalities between different groups of workers are increasing.
This report analyses the involvement of the national social partners in the implementation of policy reforms within the framework of social dialogue practices, and their involvement in elaborating the National Reform Programmes (NRPs) and other key policy documents of the European Semester cycle.
This report builds on Eurofound's existing research on social mobility, assessing the distribution and transmission of wealth in Member States. It examines the roles of inheritance and household debt in explaining the transmission of advantage or disadvantage between the generations across Member States. The analysis is based on Eurosystem's Household Finance and Consumption Survey (HFCS).
This report will focus on assessing the employment impact of the COVID-19 crisis, including its effects across sectors and for different categories of workers. It will also be looking at measures implemented to limit negative effects following the Coronavirus outbreak in Europe.
This report examines the contribution of social and employment services in EU Member States to the inclusion of people with disabilities, specifically in relation to the impact these have on labour market integration – in line with the 2006 UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The report includes a discussion of the costs and benefits of different approaches.
This report examines people's optimism about the future, for themselves and for others, and the extent to which it varies depending on one's social situation and perceptions of the quality of society. The study includes an analysis of the relationships between people’s perceptions of fairness and objective indicators of their social and economic situation and living standards.
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 (flight crew) 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 European Green Deal is at the very top of Member State agendas across the EU. This topical update maps the national discussions – in policy, public and research debates – on the potential, ongoing or already felt impact on work and employment of the transition to a low-carbon economy. It attempts to identify the most active actors involved in these discussions (governments, social partners, NGOs and so on) and their perspectives.
This report will draw from case studies of establishments across the EU that have introduced advanced digital technologies in the workplace. The technologies in focus are the Internet of Things, 3D printing and virtual and augmented reality. Each case study – illustrated in the report - will explore the approach or strategy taken by the establishment to manage the digital transition and the impact of the deployment of the technology on the work organisation and job quality.