EurWORK European Observatory of Working Life

Topical update

Topical updates summarise and update developments around selected topics, which are relevant across a number of Member States at the same time. They are mainly based on reporting from Eurofound’s network of European correspondents.

  • Statutory minimum wages in the EU 2017

    In 22 out of 28 EU Member States, a generally applicable statutory minimum wage exists; the level of this minimum wage varies greatly from one country to another. This article provides information on statutory minimum wage levels, how the minimum wage has been determined for 2017 and minimum wage coverage across the EU. The data show that the minimum wage grew more over the year preceding 1 January 2017 than the year before.

  • Addressing digital and technological change through social dialogue

    Evidence from the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Italy and Spain reveals that social partners are closely involved in setting up national strategies to manage digital change in the world of work. Up to now, this has been a high-level affair and there are only a few collective agreements or company agreements on the issue in these five countries.

  • National capacity-building initiatives for social partners: Experiences in five EU Member States

    This article examines national-level initiatives aimed at strengthening social dialogue among social partners in five Member States: Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Latvia and Lithuania. It summarises the content of the programmes, reviews the outcomes of the evaluations and offers a view of the new programming period ahead.

  • Social dialogue developments in the education sector in Europe

    Teachers across Europe have been protesting about their working conditions. Pay levels and pay inequalities, working time and workload, recruitment procedures and staffing at schools have been the main focus of social dialogue and collective action. Several of the reported cases are set in the context of educational reforms.

  • Low-wage jobs – an efficient tool to combat unemployment?

    Low-wage jobs have been a focus of debate in six countries across Europe during 2016. However, the issues discussed have reflected differing national concerns. For some countries, the key issue is the integration of migrants into the labour market; for others, how to stimulate job creation and reduce unemployment.

  • Employee involvement and participation at work: Recent research and policy developments revisited

    This topical update looks at the issue of employee involvement and participation at work, specifically reviewing recent pieces of research at EU and national level, EU directives, changes in the legal framework, social partner initiatives and debates identified in EurWORK quarterly reports during 2015 and the first quarter of 2016.

  • Developments in collective wage bargaining in the European Union 2015

    This article summarises the recent developments in collectively agreed pay in the European Union. It discusses the levels at which it is carried out, its coordination and coverage. The wage outcomes are put into the perspective of past collectively agreed wage changes and key institutional variables, including level and coordination of collective bargaining.

  • EU-level: Member States' progress in transposing Enforcement Directive on posting of workers

    This EurWORK topical update considers how EU Member States have dealt with transposing Directive 2014/67/EU to improve enforcement of European regulations as regards the posting of workers. The situation at mid-2016 is analysed, based on contributions and updates from Eurofound’s network of European correspondents from June 2016 onwards.

  • What’s happening with Sunday work in Europe?

    EU Member States have been passing laws to regulate opening hours for shops and businesses on Sundays. However, there are also Member States where new legislation is restricting opening hours. According to the European Working Conditions Survey, the proportion of workers reporting working Sundays increased between 2010 and 2015, supporting the idea that Sunday trading is becoming increasingly common.

  • New developments in the protection of whistle-blowers in the workplace

    This topical update on the protection of whistle-blowers in the EU mainly covers developments that have taken place in the years 2013–2016. The update covers international, European and national level legislation, and includes two case studies on the protection for whistle-blowers in Ireland and Slovakia.

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