In 1992, the Swedish Employers' Confederation (Svenska
Arbetsgivareföreningen, SAF) terminated the collective agreement on the work
environment with the Swedish Trade Union Confederation (Landsorganisationen,
LO) and the Federation of Salaried Employees in Industry and Services
(Privattjänstemannakartellen, PTK), which had governed the organisation of
occupational healthcare in the whole private sector. Shortly after, the then
Liberal-Centre-Conservative Government proposed legislation providing that
the state subsidies, which were granted for occupational healthcare services
fulfilling detailed criteria as regards organisation and staffing, should be
abolished. According to the Government, the state should not prescribe how
occupational healthcare should be organised, as long as it manages to fulfil
its objectives. Parliament adopted the bill although the Social Democratic
Party, at that time in opposition, and the Left Party voted against it. Thus,
since January 1993 occupational healthcare has worked under market
France's Economic and Social Council (Conseil Economique et Social, CES), a
kind of consultative parliament, is comprised of representatives of
employers' organisations, trade union organisations deemed representative at
national level, representatives of various social groups and leading figures
qualified in economic and social matters. Its main function is to provide
information to government decision-makers, and furthermore to fuel the public
debate, by formulating opinions. It may either intervene on an issue of its
own accord or be commissioned by the government to act.
Corporate Germany is changing. Pressures of low-cost competition from abroad
and high costs in Germany, boosted by the European Single Market and the
preparations for EU Economic and Monetary Union, are forcing companies to
restructure. Mergers and acquisitions are one means of corporate change. The
consultants M&A International GmBH report that in 1997 some 1,900 companies
saw a change of majority stakeholder, a 7.2% increase on 1996. In only 933
cases was the buyer a German company, implying that Germany is an important
target of cross-border acquisitions.
On 27 March, the Spanish Government approved two decrees on training
contracts (contratos de formación) and on "reduced part-time" contracts
(contratos a tiempo parcial reducido). These decrees aim to increase the
level of social protection guaranteed in these kinds of employment contract.
From now on, workers with training contracts will be entitled to full social
benefits for temporary incapacity. Moreover, workers with reduced part-time
contracts (that is, those covering work for less than 12 hours a week or 48
hours a month) will be entitled to all benefits (pensions, unemployment
benefit and temporary incapacity benefit). The Government has thus fulfilled
the commitment that it made to the social partners after the "April
agreements" - on employment stability, collective bargaining and filling the
gaps in regulation - were concluded in 1997, although almost one year later
Law No. 21/96, dated 23 July 1996 - the "40-hour week law" - provided that
from December 1996 weekly working hours in Portugal should be shortened by
two hours towards the limit of 40 hours, and that no enterprise could exceed
the 40-hour limit - without loss of pay for workers - by December 1997
(PT9712154F ). The law prompted many conflicts and controversies in 1997,
particularly over its application in the textiles, shoe manufacturing, and
hotel sectors. In textiles, sector-level collective bargaining - in which the
social partners had some difficulty coming to an understanding on issues
involving both the reduction of the working week and the organisation of
working time - resulted eventually in an agreement , published in the
/Boletim do Trabalho e Emprego/ on 8 April 1998. The settlement contains some
innovative and unexpected features, such as the following:
 http://www.min-qemp.pt/bte/s1/98/13/bte_13b.html#CCT entre a Assoc. Portuguesa de Têxteis e Vestuário e outras e a FESETE - Feder. dos Sind. dos Trabalhadores Têxteis, Lanifícios, Vestuário, Calçado e Peles de Portugal e outros - Alteração salarial e outra
Preceding the 1998 industry-level wage negotiations within the private sector
(NO9803157N ), the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions
(Landsorganisasjonen i Norge, LO) and the Norwegian Confederation of Business
and Industry (Næringslivets Hovedorganisasjon, NHO) bargained over more
general issues. The most central topic during these negotiations was the
question of further and continuing education, and the parties agreed to an
action plan for competence development which is to be the basis for their
efforts to bring about a reform in this area (NO9710127F ). The parties
informed Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik of the main issues in the
negotiations, and the Government was asked how it could contribute. The Prime
Minister's reply came by letter on 27 March 1998 and it was elaborated on in
a meeting on 31 March 1998.
A new agreement on wages and working conditions for 180,000 blue-collar
workers in the Swedish retail trade was signed on 20 March 1998. For the
first time, the settlement is a three-party agreement between the Commercial
Employees Union, (Handelsanställdas förbund, Handels) and the two
employers' organisations, the Swedish Federation of Trade, Commerce and
Service (Svensk Handel och Tjänsteföretagen) and the Cooperative Employers'
Association (Kooperationens förhandlingsorganisation, KFO).
The National Federation of White-Collar Workers (Centrale Nationale des
Employés, CNE), affiliated to the Confederation of Christian Trade Unions
(Confédération des Syndicats Chrétiens/Algemeen Christelijk Vakverbond,
CSC/ACV), is a French-speaking trade union with 127,000 members comprising
managerial and professional staff and administrative and technical
white-collar workers from the industrial and financial private sectors,
commerce and the non-profit sector in Brussels and Wallonia. It also includes
unemployed people, people on early retirement and pensioners. Its Flemish
equivalent, the Landelijke Bedienden Central (LBC) has 240,000 members.
The bill on the reduction of the statutory working week from 39 to 35 hours
(FR9803197N ) was passed at second reading stage by the National Assembly
on 31 March 1998. After its second reading in the Senate (upper house) and a
meeting of the cross-party joint committee, the bill should become law in
about the middle of May.
On 16 April 1998, the construction workers' union, IG Bau-Agrar-Umwelt, and
the construction industry employers' association, Hauptverband der deutschen
Bauindustrie (HDB), concluded a new collective agreement for the 830,000
employees in the western German construction industry.
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.
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 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.
Living and working in Europe, Eurofound’s 2020 yearbook, provides a snapshot of what is happening in the work and lives of Europeans as explored in the Agency’s research activities over the course of 2020. The scope is broad, from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on employment and on people’s well-being to the inequalities in the working conditions of women and men. It also highlights the connections between Eurofound’s work and EU policy priorities in the coming years.
The third round of Eurofound's e-survey, fielded in February and March 2021, sheds light on the social and economic situation of people after nearly a full year of living with COVID-19 restrictions: How are people doing? What is their outlook on life? How has the availability of vaccinations changed their perceptions? This report presents an overview of the main findings and tracks the developments across the 27 EU Member States since the survey was first launched in April 2020.
While the EU is considered to be a global leader in gender equality, it is not yet a reality for millions of Europeans given the different dynamics in the Member States. The EU Gender Equality Strategy 2020–2025 acknowledges the slow speed of progress and outlines key actions to promote gender equality. Have all countries improved their performance? Which countries have been able to dramatically reduce gender inequality? Which countries lag behind?
As part of an annual series on minimum wages, this report summarises the key developments during 2020 and early 2021 with an emphasis on social partners’ roles and views. It looks at how minimum wages were set in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and how minimum wages act as a reference for income support measures. Information from interviews with decision-makers on the process of setting the minimum wage in 2020, along with their assessment of impacts of the proposed EU Directive on adequate minimum wages is also included.
This joint publication with the European Environment Agency (EEA) presents the findings from complementary research carried out simultaneously by both agencies on the socioeconomic impacts of climate policies and measures. While Eurofound focuses particularly on the distributional effects of these policies based on the experiences of Member States, the EEA analyses scientific research about the monetary and non-monetary social impacts of climate mitigation policies and its outcome in terms of inequalities.
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.
The European Green Deal features high on Member State agendas. However, there are concerns that the necessary changes to climate policy may have undesirable socioeconomic consequences, such as regressive distributional effects and increased inequality. This report attempts to identify those policies where there is a significant risk involved and aims to provide guidance on how negative distributional risk can be mitigated.