The disruption of work and life as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic across the EU has been unprecedented. Since 2020, businesses came under threat, putting the jobs of many workers at risk. Policymakers – including governments, support institutions, social partners and other social actors – moved swiftly to mitigate the social and economic effects on businesses, workers and citizens.
Eurofound’s EU PolicyWatch maps measures introduced to cushion the social and economic effects on businesses, workers and citizens. It also includes information on the role played by social partners in the design and implementation of the measures. As COVID-19 becomes endemic, the sope of the database is expanding. As of mid-2022, the EU PolicyWatch will also include:
- emergency policies adopted in response to the war in Ukraine
- measures to cushion the impacts of inflation
During 2022–2023, it will also include:
- policies supporting the digital transformation
- policies supporting the green transition
- support measures for companies that need to restructure and for employees affected by this, previously reported in Eurofound's Restructuring Monitor (ERM) database on support instruments for restructuring
Access to the raw dataset, updated at irregular intervals, is also available:
Eurofound’s EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis and the war in Ukraine, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts. It aims to:
- give an overview of policy measures introduced in EU Member States (as well as Norway which also participates in the Network of Eurofound Correspondents)
- create a shared pool of information for Eurofound, its stakeholders and users
- record selected examples of company practice and collective agreements
- identify cross-country trends regarding policy measures as the situation evolves
Data have been mainly provided by the Network of Eurofound Correspondents, with quality control carried out by Eurofound staff. The policies mapped are feeding into a variety of Eurofound research, inlcuding:
- Publication: COVID-19: Policy responses across Europe
- Publication series: COVID-19
- Topic: Stand with Ukraine
EU PolicyWatch includes large-scale government measures and wider collective agreements, as well as regional and local initiatives and support measures for smaller groups of workers. As the situation in Europe is evolving, measures are newly implemented, changed or cancelled and replaced at rapid speed. Cases are updated with information on the actual uptake of the main measures and information on research investigating their effectiveness.
Outside the scope of this database are public health measures, travel and movement restrictions and company-specific job losses, the latter of which are reported in Eurofound’s European Restructuring Monitor (ERM) events database. The ERM database on support instruments for restructuring also provides more structural information on some types of measures, as well as offering the option to filter by measures taken in response to COVID-19. More in-depth sector-specific guidance for adapting workplaces can be obtained from EU-OSHA.