Germany is a federal country made up of 16 federal states (Länder) and the federation (Bund). The Länder are states with sovereign rights and responsibilities that are not devolved from the federation, but are granted to them by the Basic Law. Each state has its own government, parliament, courts and legislative as well as executive powers. Therefore, power is divided between the federation and the states according to tasks and functions. As a rule, the Basic Law stipulates that the exercise of state powers is a matter for the federal states. Read more information on Central public administration.
There is an absence of commonly agreed definitions of key concepts such as public sector, public services and public administration, not to mention ‘central’ public administration. This absence is problematic when comparing several institutions, or even when addressing different issues within one organisation. The aim of this paper is to deliver a working definition of central public administration (CPA).
This annex details the authorities responsible for the different areas of central public administration in each country (defence, social security, education, health, housing, culture, transport, etc.), showing the breakdown by central, regional and local level. Read more information on Central public administration.
Luxembourg, with a population of 502,066 in 2010, is a unitary state with two layers of government: the dominant central government and the municipalities, or communes. The state is characterised by a highly centralised administrative structure in that all legislative powers are concentrated at central level. The 106 municipalities are the only example of decentralisation. The centralised nature of the administrative structure is also underlined by the fact that the management of all the Luxembourgish public employees is the responsibility of the Ministry of Civil Service and Administrative Reform (Ministère de la Fonction publique et de la Réforme administrative), which is in charge of the development and implementation of civil service laws, on the one hand, and the modernisation of personnel and organisational management, on the other. As a state employer, this ministry negotiates with the trade unions on all questions related to remuneration of all public employees in the public sector. Read more information on Central public administration.
Finland is a unitary state where the highest organs of government are the parliament, the president and the government. The Finnish public administration has two tiers: the state administration and the self-governing municipalities. The state administration operates on all three administrative levels (national or central, regional and local administration level), with the national level being the major area of operation. The municipal administration operates on regional and local levels. Since the majority of the municipalities are rather small (half of them have fewer than 5,000 inhabitants), the most demanding tasks, such as specialised healthcare, are provided through cooperative arrangements. Read more information on Central public administration.
In 2009, the legislation that governs Sunday trading in France was amended by
Act No. 2009-974 9 (in French)  – the so-called /Loi Mallié/ – which
reaffirmed the principle that no-one should have to work on a Sunday but
relaxed the rules to allow some businesses to open on Sundays in certain
situations, such as during the holiday season in tourist areas. However, the
number of employees working on Sundays has been growing since the 1990s, with
young people and women particularly affected, according to a recent paper (in
French, 840KB PDF)  published by the Agency for Research, Studies and
During the last few decades, public administration workers have been subject to a number of structural, modernising reforms, in a framework often designated as ‘new public management’. The current economic and financial crisis has also meant that the steep rise in public debt has prompted many authorities to try to reduce public expenditure by introducing freezes and reductions in pay and employment for civil servants. This report sets out to provide an overview of the main causes and reasons for change in central public administration in the European member states plus Norway. It also looks at the impact these changes have had on the sector's working conditions, as well as exploring how this situation is expected to evolve.
On 19 March 2013, representatives of employee and employer organisations in
healthcare held a meeting to discuss the creation of the Tripartite Council
of the National Health System of Lithuania (LNSSTT). The council was
established on 7 May 2013.
In Slovakia, benefits for those ‘in material need’ are provided to
citizens who do not have enough income. This benefit is secured by the
Constitution and several hundred thousand people, including children, are
long-term recipients of this benefit. In 2012, 6.6% of the population were
living on this benefit. However, in southern and eastern regions, where
approximately 40% of the country’s most economically-deprived people are
living, the proportion of recipients was 11%. The benefit is not very
generous and figures from the Mutual Information System on Social Protection
(MISSOC ) show that in 2013 it was a maximum €398.14 for a household of
two adults with no other income, living with two children (aged 5 and 10
years) in a three-bedroom apartment.
A report published on 22 October 2013 by the Trades Union Congress (TUC )
makes the case for a stronger voice for workers in corporate governance
structures, including ‘a mandatory system for the representation of workers
on company boards’.
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.
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.
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.
This report will map the existing regulations on telework in European Union Member States, including in legislation and collective agreements. It will present the most recent changes to these regulations and shed light on how the future of (tele)work could be regulated at both national and EU level, in order to improve working conditions in telework arrangements and reduce the risks associated with telework and with specific ways of working remotely.
As part of a process to collect information on essential services, the European Commission (DG EMPL) requested Eurofound to provide input on certain aspects of existing and planned measures in the Member States to improve access to essential services, in reference to Principle 20 of the European Pillar of Social Rights. The scope of the exercise included energy services, public transport and digital communications, and the focus was on people at risk of poverty or social exclusion (in practice, people on low incomes in most cases).
This report focuses on trends and developments in collective bargaining that were evident from the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. It examines potential new strategic approaches and priorities incorporated in negotiation agendas, as well as collective bargaining practices and coordination at sector and company levels in the private sector.
This report explores the association between skills use and skills strategies and establishment performance, and how other workplace practices, in terms of work organisation, human resources management and employee involvement, can impact on this. It looks at how skills shortages can be addressed, at least in part, by creating an environment in which employees are facilitated and motivated to make better use of the skills they already have. This further supports the business case for a more holistic approach to management.
This policy brief will provide an update on upward convergence in the economic, social and institutional dimensions of the European Union, as outlined in the European Pillar of Social Rights and its accompanying Social Scoreboard.
The financial services sector is pertinent for studying the impact of digitalisation, as the main ‘raw material’ of the sector is digitally stored and processed. Process automation in the sector is likely to lead to significant job losses over the next 10 years, as the high street bank presence declines and the online bank presence increasingly accounts for a higher share of overall activity. Such trends have already been identified in bank restructurings captured in Eurofound’s European Restructuring Monitor.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the electricity 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 aim of this Eurofound study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the electricity sector in the EU Member States.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the gas 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 aim of this Eurofound’s study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the gas sector in the EU Member States.
This report investigates the practical implementation of the European Works Council (EWC) Directive at company level. It explores the challenges faced by existing EWCs and provides examples of identified solutions and remaining issues from the point of view of both workers and management. The report looks at the way that EWCs meet the requirements of the EWC Directive in terms of establishing processes of information and consultation.
The hospital sector has been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Hospitals and their workers are on the frontline in the fight against the virus, and they face a number of significant challenges in terms of resources, work organisation and working conditions. This study will explore the role of social dialogue and collective bargaining in how the sector is adapting to the pandemic. What kinds of changes have been introduced, either through social dialogue or collective bargaining? Are the changes temporary or permanent?