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 European 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

13638 items found
  • Ford case highlights the costs of inward and outward investment

    The Ford Motor Company announced on 16 January 1997 that it was to cut 1,300 jobs at its Halewood plant on Merseyside (in the north-west of England) This was after five days of speculation following a report in the /Observer/ newspaper that Ford wanted to install new efficient working practices, and that it would threaten to build its new -generation Escort model elsewhere, or close the plant altogether if trade unions did not agree to concessions. It was confirmed on 16 January that production of the new-model Escort would not include Halewood but instead be located at Saarlouis (Germany) and Valencia (Spain), and furthermore that Halewood would also immediately reduce its shift pattern to one shift per day. Because production of the old-model Escort is due to be phased out by 2000, there appears to be a real threat of the plant closing down altogether
  • Forthcoming mass redundancies at Tele Danmark: the Danish telecom sector in transformation

    On 29 January 1997, Tele Danmark informed its employees of its decision to reduce staff by 2,500 and take on 500 new employees. The decision, which was due to come into effect by mid-1998, is part of an efficiency plan, which will cut annual costs by DKK 600 million and implement major organisational changes.
  • Only one firm in five has a works council

    In the Works Constitution [1] Act (Betriebsverfassungsgesetz) of 1972, works councils [2] in Germany are given extensive rights of information, consultation and co-determination [3]. The employer has to provide the works council with both timely and comprehensive information on all matters related to the discharge of its functions. In establishments with over 20 employees, information must be given "in full and in good time" on reductions in operations and the introduction of new working methods. Consultation rights cover planned structural alterations to the plant and prospective changes in equipment and working methods that affect job requirements, all decisions relating to manpower planning, and individual dismissals. [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/efemiredictionary/works-constitution-0 [2] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/efemiredictionary/works-council-2 [3] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/efemiredictionary/co-determination-2
  • Government proposes amendments in wage guarantee legislation

    On 19 February, the Government presented a bill to Parliament, proposing modifications in the legislation concerning the granting of workers' claims in case of their employer's insolvency. There is no doubt that it will be passed by Parliament. This will then be the second time the legislation has been modified in order to comply with EU Council Directive 80/987/EEC on this subject.
  • Social partners agree three-year national programme

    The primary objectives of Partnership 2000 (P2000) are: " the continued development of an efficient modern economy capable of high and sustainable economic and employment growth and operating within the constraints of international competitiveness, ensuring that Irish society becomes more inclusive, that long-term unemployment is substantially reduced, and that the benefits of growth are more equally distributed. The strategy provides a framework within which specific issues or programmes will be developed, in the normal way."
  • UGT assesses collective bargaining in 1996

    According to the UGT trade union confederation, during the 1996 collective bargaining round pay increases were generally settled in line with the Social Concertation Agreement for that year.
  • Industrial action in public administration

    Industrial action has accompanied trade unions' pay demands in Spain's public administration since late 1996, and the threat of further action has been made if negotiations are not started immediately.
  • Commission report links employee financial participation and productivity

    In January 1997, the European Commission adopted a report on the Promotion of Participation by Employed Persons in Profits and Enterprise Results, including equity participation (PEPPER II). The report suggests that profit-sharing schemes lead to higher productivity, whatever method, model specification and data are used. The macroeconomic situation was found to have little effect on government or social partner support for such schemes, but recent debates relating to enhancing productivity and wage flexibility are stimulating discussions on proposals. However, in most member states, trade unions can be expected to oppose the use of financial participation schemes to promote wage flexibility.

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