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  • Article
    27 Abril 1997

    Ireland's largest trade union, the Services Industrial Professional and
    Technical Union (SIPTU), has a new president after a closer than expected
    ballot of its 180,000 members. The tight result - announced in early April
    1997 - surprised the union's leadership, given the fact that a left-wing
    activist polled almost 42% of the votes cast compared with the 56% who voted
    for former vice-president, Jimmy Somers.

  • Article
    27 Abril 1997

    The /Seymour-Smith/ case has raised the issue of the legality of the two-year
    qualifying period of employment before employees may bring a claim for unfair
    dismissal. The /Observer/ in April reported that many employees are having
    their employment contracts terminated only days before completing the
    two-year period which is necessary to gain employment protection. At present,
    full-time employees must have accumulated two years' continuous service,
    while for employees who work between eight and 16 hours per week, the
    qualifying period is five years.

  • Article
    27 Abril 1997

    The principal collective agreement in the Dutch information technology and
    office equipment sector, concluded in April 1997 between the employers'
    organisation and one of the trade unions, has been criticised by the other
    unions and four large software and service companies

  • Article
    27 Abril 1997

    In the wake of Renault's announcement of the closure of its plant at
    Vilvoorde (EU9703108F [1]) European trade unions, the European Commission and
    the European Parliament have called for tougher measures to protect the
    interests of employees in the event of large-scale redundancies, business
    transfers and relocation. In an address to the European Parliament (EP) in
    March, Padraig Flynn, the commissioner responsible for industrial relations,
    employment and social affairs, reminded member state governments that they
    had rejected such tougher measures in 1992. While he argued that existing
    legislation covered the situation at Renault, there had to be a serious
    question mark over the deterrent effect of the level of sanctions currently
    available. He told MEP s that he would "propose to the Commission that we
    proceed in the coming weeks with the first stage of consultations with the
    social partners at European level on this issue and I sincerely hope that we
    are able, through this action, the strengthen the protection of workers"
    (reported in RAPID, 11 March). He also pronounced himself in favour of the
    institution of general rules to complement existing measures, aimed at making
    information and consultation compulsory at member state level.

    [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/undefined-working-conditions/the-renault-case-and-the-future-of-social-europe

  • Article
    27 Abril 1997

    In March 1997, the social partners in Italy's leather and suede sector agreed
    a code of conduct providing for the application of International Labour
    Organisation (ILO) Conventions on the rights of workers and the employment of
    minors.

  • Article
    27 Marzo 1997

    On 19 March 1997, Parliament passed a reform of the Arbeitszeitgesetz(AZG,
    Working Time Act) - see Record AT9702102F [1]. This necessitated minor
    changes to the Arbeitsruhegesetz(ARG, Leisure Time Act) which were also
    passed on 19 March. However, the parliamentary Labour and Social Affairs
    Committee, at the behest of the social partners, had introduced wording
    allowing more flexibility than hitherto in regard to Sunday work, causing a
    major public debate in its wake. In future it will be possible for the social
    partners to conclude collective agreements permitting exceptions from the
    general ban on Sunday work. They can only do so, the law states, if it is
    necessary in order to avoid economic disadvantage or to safeguard employment.
    As far as this is feasible, the collective agreement has to specify the
    activities to be permissible on Sundays and the time allowed for them. Until
    now it was not possible to grant specific exemptions from the ban on Sunday
    work except if the technology required continuous production. The Minister of
    Labour and Social Affairs could, however, permit a whole industry to work on
    Sundays.

    [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/undefined-law-and-regulation/moves-towards-greater-working-time-flexibility

  • Article
    27 Marzo 1997

    At the end of February 1997 the education and employment minister, James
    Paice, was warning that "people ignore at their peril the value of investing
    in learning", arguing that too many employers still do not realise the value
    of investing in their employees. He went on to say that action should be
    taken immediately to drive up skill levels and standards to keep up with
    growing international competition. Employers were said to be a crucial part
    of this process but, it is "not how much you invest in training, its how you
    invest it". The Government thus backs the Investors in People (IIP) standard,
    as it shows that spending money on people is an investment and not a cost.

  • Article
    27 Marzo 1997

    At the beginning of 1997, the total privatisation of Telefónica, the largest
    Spanish telecommunications firm, was completed. The trade unions in the
    company, led by CCOO and UGT, have applied for a judicial review of this
    measure, demanding its suspension until the new regulatory framework for the
    sector is defined, and a public, universal and quality service is guaranteed
    in the area of telecommunications. The Supreme Court has agreed to consider
    the appeal but has not suspended the privatisation.

  • Article
    27 Marzo 1997

    The shock announcement by French motor manufacturer Renault, on 28 February
    1997, of the closure of its plant at Vilvoorde, led to an unprecedented
    public display of condemnation among the political establishment of the
    European Union (EU). The closure of the plant, in the Belgian Prime
    Minister's constituency near Brussels, with the loss of 3,100 jobs, was
    apparently announced without prior consultation with worker representatives.
    The move was justified by Renault as being part of a wider reorganisation
    aimed at making savings of over FRF 825 million per year. The closure of the
    only Renault production site in Belgium is likely to lead a further 1,000
    redundancies among suppliers and subcontractors; jobs which, in the current
    economic climate in Belgium, are unlikely to be replaced in the near future.
    The announcement came as a particularly heavy blow to a workforce who had
    thought their jobs safe, having negotiated a major flexibility and investment
    package only four years previously. The plant is generally regarded as being
    highly productive and achieving high levels of quality. The decision by
    Renault to close this plant in July 1997 has been interpreted by many workers
    as a warning that even a willingness to accept more flexible working
    practices can in future no longer be regarded as a guarantee for job
    security. The predicament of the workers at Vilvoorde has led to an
    unprecedented display of worker solidarity, not only among employees at other
    Renault production sites in Europe, but also among workers in other troubled
    European industries.

Series

  • European Quality of Life Survey 2003

    Eurofound’s European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) examines both the objective circumstances of European citizens' lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. This series consists of outputs from the EQLS 2003, the first edition of the survey.

  • European Quality of Life Survey 2007

    Eurofound's European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) examines both the objective circumstances of European citizens' lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. This series consists of outputs from the EQLS 2007, the second edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2003.

  • European Quality of Life Survey 2012

    Eurofound's European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) examines both the objective circumstances of European citizens' lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. This series consists of outputs from the EQLS 2012, the third edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2003. 

  • European Working Conditions Survey 2005

    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 EWCS 2005, the fourth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • European Working Conditions Survey 2010

    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 EWCS 2010, the fifth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • Manufacturing employment outlook

    This publication series explores scenarios for the future of manufacturing. The employment implications (number of jobs by sector, occupation, wage profile, and task content) under various possible scenarios are examined. The scenarios focus on various possible developments in global trade and energy policies and technological progress and run to 2030.

Forthcoming publications