EurWORK European Observatory of Working Life

Community-scale undertakings

A ‘community-scale undertaking’ is ‘any undertaking with at least 1,000 employees within the Member States and at least 150 employees in each of at least two Member States’, as set out in the European Works Councils Directive (Council Directive 94/45/EC of 22 September 1994 on the establishment of a European Works Council or a procedure in Community-scale undertakings and Community-scale groups of undertakings for the purposes of informing employees and consulting with them).

Given the complex structure of many such Community-scale undertakings, the Directive also provides a definition which covers a ‘group of undertakings’: ‘a controlling undertaking and its controlled undertakings’. The concept of a controlling undertaking’ is explained in Article 3(1) of the Directive as ‘an undertaking which can exercise a dominant influence over another undertaking (‘the controlled undertaking’) by virtue, for example, of ownership, financial participation or the rules which govern it’. Article 3 also provides for presumptions of dominant influence in specified circumstances.

See also: central management of the enterprise; corporate structures; European Works Councils; transnational enterprise.

Please note: the European industrial relations dictionary is updated annually. If errors are brought to our attention, we will try to correct them.
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