EurWORK European Observatory of Working Life

Articles

EurWORK articles cover working life in Europe, in particular the fields of industrial relations and working conditions. The articles are based on quarterly reporting provided by the Network of Eurofound Correspondents.

  • Topical updates summarise and update developments around selected topics, which are relevant across a number of Member States at the same time
  • Spotlight reports cover in more depth country-level events, debates and changes in regulation related to working life, aiming to provide a balanced view of all parties’ positions
  • Research in Focus articles report on important research findings (including surveys) from the national level, often, but not exclusively, in the area of working conditions
  • In brief articles are short news items drawn from the correspondents' quarterly reports
  • Country updates summarise developments at national level and are published 4 times a year

13876 items found
  • Controversy surrounds social security financing

    In the Netherlands, there has been a long struggle over how responsibilities for administering social security should be divided between social partners and the government. The Dutch social security administration has been reorganised - most recently from March 1997 - under pressure of criticism about organisations in which the social partners play a dominant role. Financing the social security system has become a structural problem in the relations between the Government and the social partners. This has become especially manifest in conflicts concerning the level at which social security contributions should be set.
  • Danish building and construction sites are hazardous workplaces

    According to the report /Reported industrial injuries in the building and construction sector, 1993-1995/, from the Labour Inspectorate, the sector experienced a 22% increase in industrial accidents over the course of 1993-1995. The general increase in industrial accidents in the period was 11%. Whereas approximately 5% of the workforce are employed in the building and construction sector, this sector reported 8% of all industrial accidents. Every month one fatal and 50 serious accidents occur in the sector, and 84 fatal accidents took place at all Danish workplaces in 1995. The increased number of accidents in the building and construction sector, according to the Labour Inspectorate, can largely be explained by the sector's 9% job-growth and the improved reporting of industrial accidents.
  • New pay agreement for newspaper distributors

    Pay for 15,000 newspaper distributors has been increased by SEK 2.75 per hour retrospectively from 1 January 1997 and by SEK 0.45 from 1 August 1997, according to the new collective agreement between the Swedish Publishers' Association and the Swedish Transport Workers' Union. The agreement runs for one year. A novel feature of the agreement is that employees from now on have undertaken to distribute periodicals and other items of mail together with the newspapers. The employers have thus achieved one of their important demands.
  • April 1997 a good month for UK car plants

    April 1997 was a very good month for securing the future of British car plants. The Ford Halewood plant on Merseyside and the Peugeot Ryton plant in Coventry have both secured the production of new vehicles into the next century. The future of Rover's Longbridge plant is in the balance while an announcement is delayed over whether a new model /Mini/ will be produced.
  • Nanterre Magistrate's Court suspends the closure of Renault Vilvorde

    After the Brussels Industrial tribunal (BE9704208N [1]), on 4 April it was a French court's turn to find Renault's management guilty of disobeying the law in a ruling which could well postpone the closure of the Vilvorde plant. [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/tribunal-decision-annuls-renault-closure
  • Belgian armed forces announce changes in personnel management

    The Belgian Defence Minister, Jean-Pol Poncelet, has announced measures that will prompt far-reaching changes in the personnel structure of the Belgian armed forces, covering the army, navy and airforce. The policy directly or indirectly affects about 40,000 military personnel. Mr Poncelet's plans are innovative and rather unusual for the armed forces, which are not normally known for their swift changes in organisational structure and personnel management. The Minister feels, however, that the armed forces should not be exempt from moves towards greater flexibility, currently a prominent theme in labour negotiations in Belgium. Moreover, changes in the armed forces can serve as an example for other sectors of the Belgian economy.
  • Doubts about new convergence programme

    On 17 April 1997, the Spanish Parliament endorsed the new convergence programme released by the Government, the /1997-2000 Stability Plan/. Employers and unions have expressed certain doubts about this programme: the employers' associations consider that it is feasible, but do not rule out the possibility that a severer adjustment will be necessary than expected; the trade unions suspect that the programme may involve cuts in social expenditure and have expressed their disagreement with the privatisation plan that accompanies it.
  • Collective bargaining and strikes in the first quarter of 1997

    The incidence of collective bargaining across a variety of sectors in Portugal has tended slightly to decrease in the first quarter of 1997. However, at the same time, the number of strikes has been increasing - often to enforce reductions in working time
  • Banking sector in conflict over statutory working week

    In France, regulation of the working week is based on a piece of legislation passed in 1936, which laid down a work schedule spread over five days. Decrees on the application of this law made special provision, in each sector, for the way in which these hours would be organised. The one concerning banking dates from 1937.
  • Krupp-Hoesch/Thyssen merger intensifies debate on future of German stakeholder capitalism

    Just one week after the German social partners and Government found a compromise on the future development of the German mining industry (DE9703104F [1]) the Ruhr region (one of Germany's oldest industrial areas) was again the focus of social conflict. On 18 March 1997 the second-largest German steel producer, Krupp-Hoesch, announced plans for a hostile takeover of its main competitor, Thyssen. Krupp-Hoesch made an offer to the Thyssen shareholders to buy their shares for DEM 435 each, which was about 25% higher than the current quotation on the German stock exchange. The president of Krupp-Hoesch, Gerhard Cromme, stated that the acquisition of Thyssen would create a lot of synergy effects, and could help to improve the international competitiveness of the German steel industry. [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/undefined/miners-revolt-ends-in-corporatist-compromise

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