France seems to have settled into a period of economic stagnation, with a string of five consecutive quarters of zero growth and unemployment continuing to soar (now amounting to 10% of the labour force). The number of business failures rose by 2.7% in 2012, to 59,780, a level that remains below the 2009 record. President François Hollande, elected in 2012, expressed the wish for the social partners to participate in the reform of the labour market to face the crisis.
On 9 October 2013, the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Bulgaria 
adopted an updated employment strategy for 2013–2020. The strategy was
developed in response to the falling employment rate as a result of the
global economic and financial crisis and by the deepening unprecedented
demographic crisis in the country. During 2008–2011 the coefficient of
employment dropped 7.7 percentage points, while the unemployment rate
increased from 5.6% to 12.3%.
Since 2010 Greece has been witnessing a severe economic crisis and depression, having signed three ‘rescue’ loan agreements with IMF, EU and ECB during this period. These Memoranda include, among other things, a large number of commitments to reform the labour relations system to make it more flexible.
Collective agreements are legally binding documents, and since 2003 the
Labour Code has made it possible for them to be extended by ministerial
decree. In 2010, four branch collective agreements were extended for the
first time to wood and furniture, water supply, brewing and the paper and
pulp industry, although the extension of the wood and furniture agreement was
later withdrawn because of procedural errors. The first agreement to be
extended was for the brewery industry, and it was extended a second time in
2011 after the signing of the new sectoral collective agreement.
As a result of economic crisis, in 2009 Croatian GDP fell by 9% as compared to 2008. After stabilisation in 2010/11, in 2012 GDP again fell, by 2.7% as compared to 2011. Forecasts indicate very limited recovery in 2013. Unemployment rose constantly from 8.4% in 2008 to 11.8% in 2010 and 15.8% in 2012. The core characteristic of employment regulation in Croatia is division between fixed-term and regular employment as prescribed by the Labour Law.
The Labour Law in Latvia sets out the basic legal principles of the
country’s employment system. All matters relating to employment rights are
covered on various levels in a single document, although it is supplemented
by 36 other acts, more than 20 of which deal with labour protection matters.
The current Labour Law has been in force since 1 June 2002, and during that
time it has been amended seven times.
The Irish Government  was relieved late in 2013 when a threatened
electricity strike was averted. The strike had been set for 16 December 2013,
and centred on a clash over the management of any future deficit in the
long-established defined benefit (DB) pension scheme in the state-owned ESB
 electric utility. The dispute was resolved through decisive intervention
by the Labour Relations Commission (LRC ).
At the end of January, 95 days after the early parliamentary election in the
Czech Republic, a coalition government was formed by the Czech Social
Democratic Party (ČSSD ), the ANO 2011 movement (Hnutí ANO ) and the
Christian Democrats (KDU-ČSL ).
In Germany, cross-sectoral collective bargaining takes place only for public employees at the federal or regional level. In 2011, some 54% and 37% of employees in western and eastern Germany respectively were, however, covered by a sectoral collective agreement. Peak-level employer organisations and trade union confederations coordinate the collective bargaining interests of their affiliates from different sectors and also represent them on cross-sectoral social dialogue issues on the national and European-level.
For more than 30 years, the French Labour Code has allowed employees to
refuse to carry out work if they have reason to believe it presents a serious
and imminent risk to their life or health. This right is set out in Article
4131–1  of the French Labour Code and was enforced through the fourth
Auroux Law from December 1982. This legislation also obliged companies to set
up a health and safety committee  (CHSCT ) for each workplace.
The European Restructuring Monitor (ERM) has reported on the employment impact of large-scale business restructuring since 2002. This publication series include the ERM reports, as well as blogs, articles and working papers on restructuring-related events in the EU27 and Norway.
Eurofound’s European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) paints a wide-ranging picture of Europe at work across countries, occupations, sectors and age groups. This series consists of findings from the European Working Conditions Telephone Survey (EWCTS) 2021, an extraordinary edition conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey was first carried out in 1990.
This publication series gathers all overview reports on developments in working life, annual reviews in industrial relations and working conditions produced by Eurofound on the basis of national contributions from the Network of Eurofound Correspondents (NEC). Since 1997, these reports have provided overviews of the latest developments in industrial relations and working conditions across the EU and Norway. The series may include recent ad hoc articles written by members of the NEC.
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.
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).
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.
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.
Are the policies required to meet the commitments outlined under the EU’s plan for a green transition, the Fit-for-55 package, and the associated budgetary commitments – the Green New Deal – likely to lead to positive or negative employment outcomes by 2030? What types of jobs will be created or destroyed? Will shifts in employment be skewed towards the bottom, middle or top of the job–wage distribution? This report aims to provide answers to these questions, using macro-modelled estimates of the likely impacts of these policies on the structure of employment.
This report explores the potential socio-economic implications of the transition to a climate-neutral economy on different EU regions and groups of people. It adopts a foresight approach to envision potential actions that can be taken to shape the future. After consulting with stakeholders and experts, three scenarios were developed to consider emerging economic and social inequalities at EU and regional level. The report includes policy pointers which outline measures to be taken to achieve a just transition to a sustainable, climate-neutral economy where no one is left behind.
This report explores how environmental performance has converged – or diverged – among the EU Member States since the early 2000s. With environmental goals piling up at the EU level, is it reasonable to expect Member States to adhere to this emerging EU environmental aquis? And, just as importantly, can we expect Member States to reach these goals at the same time? This report attempts to provide answers to these and other questions high on the political agenda.
This report investigates the potential individual and societal impacts of labour market insecurity, focusing on workers with non-permanent contracts, part-time and self-employed workers, and workers who perceive their job as insecure. It explores the impact of labour market insecurities on health and well-being, social exclusion, trust in people and the perception of fairness, as well as trust in institutions. Policies aimed at reducing labour market instability following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic are also presented.
This report highlights the prevalence of psychosocial risks across countries, sectors and occupations during the later phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. It outlines the specific working conditions that can lead to work-related health problems. In particular, the report investigates the potential pitfalls related to the expansion of telework, the role of job and income insecurity as a psychosocial risk and the phenomenon of adverse social behaviour and discrimination at work. In addition, it offers policy pointers on tackling the increase in work absenteeism due to mental health problems.
This report – published every two years – covers important developments resulting from legislative reforms in collective bargaining at national or sectoral level in 2021 and 2022. It examines the average weekly working hours set by collective agreements, both across national economies and in five sectors: education, health, transport, retail and public administration.
This policy brief provides facts and figures on the working life and job quality of so-called ‘essential workers’ and is based on data from the European Working Conditions Telephone Survey (EWCTS) extraordinary edition 2021. It will define various subgroups of essential workers, describe the challenges they face and outline the type of responses provided, or being developed, to address those challenges.
This policy brief aims to contribute to the effective monitoring and evaluation of the European Child Guarantee. Progress at EU level is measured by a monitoring framework which monitors the key areas of the European Child Guarantee: early childhood education and care; education, including school-based activities and at least one healthy meal each school day; healthcare; healthy nutrition; and adequate housing. The policy brief explores trends and disparities in these areas using a convergence analysis, which tracks any disparities among EU Member States.