High Level Group on Industrial Relations
The High Level Group on Industrial Relations was set up following the Commission’s Communication on the Social Agenda of June 2000 to put forward recommendations to European policymakers and the social partners on the contribution of industrial relations to the process of managing change in Europe. The High Level Group was composed of 10 experts from various backgrounds representing a broad range of interests and with a key role in industrial relations. Its chair was Maria Joao Rodrigues, former Portuguese government minister.
The Group presented its report to the Commission in January 2002. The report presented recommendations on the best way to achieve a high level of quality in industrial relations as a key component of quality in social policy. It proposed a new agenda for industrial relations in order to cope with some of the key priorities: competitiveness and innovation with social cohesion, wage responsiveness, social inclusion and social protection, training and lifelong learning, working conditions and work organisation, new forms of employment, working time management and reconciliation of work and family life.
The report significantly highlights three issues which must be addressed in order to improve the European dimension of industrial relations: the interaction between European industrial relations and the national and local level; the interaction between bipartite and tripartite processes at European level; and the interaction between the sectoral and intersectoral levels.