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  • Article
    25 August 2003

    In July 2003, the Dutch social partners, represented on the bipartite Labour
    Foundation, issued an opinion opposing a proposal for the reform of
    dismissals law put forward by a government-appointed committee. The committee
    proposed abolishing the system whereby dismissals must be approved in advance
    by a public authority. The Foundation argues that the objections raised by
    the committee do not outweigh the advantages of the present system, which
    keeps costs in check and offers the parties involved a high degree of
    certainty and security.

  • Article
    25 August 2003

    On 8 October 2001, the EU Council of Ministers adopted Council Regulation
    (EC) No. 2157/2001 [1] on the Statute for a European Company (or Societas
    Europaea, SE) and Council Directive 2001/86/EC [2] supplementing the Statute
    for a European Company with regard to the involvement of employees
    (EU0206202F [3]). Member States must adopt the laws, regulations and
    administrative provisions necessary to comply with the Directive by 8 October
    2004 (the date that the Regulation, which is directly applicable in the
    Member States, comes into force), or ensure by then that management and
    labour introduce the required provisions by agreement. The European Company
    Statute (ECS) Regulation gives companies the option of forming a European
    Company (SE) which can operate on a Europe-wide basis and be governed by
    Community law directly applicable in all Member States (rather than national
    law). The Directive lays down the employee involvement provisions to apply to
    SEs - providing for negotiations between management and employee
    representatives in each SE on the arrangements to apply, with a set of
    back-up statutory 'standard rules' where no agreement is reached. Involvement
    constitutes the information and consultation of employees and, in some cases,
    board-level participation.

    [1] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=en&numdoc=32001R2157&model=guichett
    [2] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32001L0086&model=guichett
    [3] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/european-company-statute-in-focus

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    The Union of Wood, Industrial and Building Workers (Træ-Industri-Byg, TIB)
    has announced that it will establish an affiliated organisation to recruit as
    trade union members self-employed 'sole operators' working in the
    construction industry. These sole operators work alone without any employees
    and do not meet the conditions to be considered as companies, as all they
    provide is their own labour - ie in reality they work as normal wage earners
    (they are known as 'arme og ben-firmaer', or 'arms and legs firms'). TIB
    estimates that there are around 11,000 such sole operators, and the number is
    increasing. According to the union, their presence in the industry results in
    'dumping' in terms of prices and safety. Typically, they work at lower wages
    than employees covered by a collective agreement, and TIB and the trade union
    bargaining cartel in building and construction, (Bygge-, Anlægs- og
    Trækartellet, BAT-kartellet) see this as a serious problem. Together the
    unions are aiming to combat this phenomenon, both through unionising the more
    'serious' of the self-employed sole operators and closing down the less
    serious 'arms and legs firms'.

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    Special 'tripartite sector teams', made up of representatives of the social
    partners and government, have been created in Poland since the 1990s to deal
    with the problems of selected industries (such as coal mining, metalworking
    and power generation) facing restructuring, privatisation and reorganisation.
    The teams are responsible for drawing up guidelines on restructuring within
    these sectors, including 'social packages' for employees. This article
    examines the operation of the tripartite sector teams up until the end of
    2002.

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    On 30 April 2003, the centre-right coalition government published a
    parliamentary white paper on family policy, in which it recommends changes to
    the present regulations on parental leave (St Meld. nr 29 (2002-3) [1]). The
    main objective of the government’s proposals is to encourage men to spend
    more time at home with their children. To this end, it proposes to extend the
    so-called 'father quota', which is the part of the parental leave period
    reserved for the father. It also proposes to improve the compensation level
    for self-employed women during parental leave .

    [1] http://www.odin.dep.no/bfd/norsk/publ/stmeld/004001-040008/index-dok000-b-n-a.html

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    From 1 July 2003, the Labour Code of the Republic of Hungary was amended by
    Act XX of 2003. The modifications include the transposition of five European
    Union Directives on: working time (2000/34/EC [1]); fixed-term work
    (1999/70/EC [2]); part-time work (1997/81/EC [3]); transfers of undertakings
    (2001/23/EC [4]); and the working time of seafarers (1999/63/EC [5]).

    [1] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32000L0034&model=guichett
    [2] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32000L0034&model=guichett
    [3] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=31997L0081&model=guichett
    [4] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32001L0023&model=guichett
    [5] http://europa.eu.int/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexapi!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=31999L0063&model=guichett

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    Since the coalition government of the conservative People’s Party
    (Österreichische Volkspartei, ÖVP) and the populist Freedom Party
    (Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs, FPÖ) took office for the first time in
    February 2000 (it started a second term in February 2003), it has launched
    several initiatives to restructure the state-owned Austrian Federal Railways
    (Österreichische Bundesbahnen, ÖBB). The government’s aim has been to
    reduce the financial burden on the state arising from its legal obligation to
    compensate for ÖBB’s deficits. However, so far the two governing parties
    have not managed to reach a joint agreement on how to reorganise this public
    company. Recent ÖVP plans (presented in January 2003) to transform ÖBB into
    a holding company, heading several independently-operating enterprises
    specialising in sales, infrastructure, financing, personnel management etc,
    were strongly opposed by the Union of Railway Employees (Gewerkschaft der
    Eisenbahner, GdE) (AT0302201N [1]). The union argues that splitting up ÖBB
    would pave the way for the privatisation and sell-off of the company’s
    divisions one by one. With GdE threatening industrial action in the event of
    ÖBB being dismantled (AT0211201N [2]), restructuring measures such as those
    planned by ÖVP and – in principle – supported by the management have
    hitherto been blocked.

    [1] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/railway-employees-threaten-strike-over-restructuring
    [2] www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/dispute-over-railway-restructuring

  • Article
    21 August 2003

    On 13 August 2003, the police raided the Fredericia shipyard and seven
    illegal workers – five Polish and two Philippine nationals – were
    arrested. This action was the result of several months’ investigation based
    on information from an alleged organiser of a network of illegal workers. The
    raid followed a tip-off from the local branch of the General Workers’ Union
    (Specialarbejderforbundet i Danmark, SiD) which had discovered that illegal
    workers employed by a subcontractor were to work on the surface treatment of
    a ship. The illegal workers at Fredericia were paid around DKK 45 per hour,
    irrespective of the time of the day and the day of the week when they were
    working. This is about one-third of the wage paid to Danish workers under the
    relevant collective agreements.

  • Article
    18 August 2003

    On 27 May 2003, representatives of all trade unions affiliated to the the
    Confederation of German Trade Unions (Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund, DGB)
    signed a package ofnational cross-sector collective agreements [1] for
    temporary agency workers with the Federal Association of Temporary Employment
    Agencies (Bundesverband Zeitarbeit Personal-Dienstleistungen, BZA), whose
    members include some of the major companies in the sector. Thepackage [2]
    consists of a general framework collective agreement on employment conditions
    (Manteltarifvertrag) - the final version of which was signed on 11 June 2003
    - a framework collective agreement on pay grades (Entgeltrahmentarifvertrag)
    and a collective agreement on pay (Entgelttarifvertrag). Two days later, on
    29 May 2003, a similarpackage [3] of collective agreements was agreed by the
    DGB affiliates and a second employers' association, the Association of German
    Temporary Employment Agencies (Interessengemeinschaft Deutscher
    Zeitarbeitsunternehmen, iGZ), representing a number of small and medium-sized
    temporary agencies.

    [1] http://www.bza.de/downloads/VE_Zeitarbeit_DGB_BZA.pdf
    [2] http://www.dgb.de/themen/Tarifpolitik/Zeitarbeit/index.htm/
    [3] http://www.dgb.de/themen/Tarifpolitik/Zeitarbeit/index.htm/

  • Article
    18 August 2003

    July 2003 saw a wave of protests by trade unions represented at Polish
    National Railways (PKP) against the planned closure of loss-making local
    services. Faced with the unions' threat of a general rail strike, PKP
    management and the government agreed to cut the number of services to be
    axed. However, the continuing restructuring of PKP, which is facing major
    financial difficulties, suggests that further unrest cannot be ruled out.

Series

  • European Quality of Life Surveys

    The European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2003, with the latest edition in 2016. It examines both the objective circumstances of people's lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. It covers issues around employment, income, education, housing, family, health and work–life balance. It also looks at subjective topics, such as people's levels of happiness and life satisfaction, and perceptions of the quality of society.

  • European Jobs Monitor

    This series brings together publications and other outputs of the European Jobs Monitor (EJM), which tracks structural change in European labour markets. The EJM analyses shifts in the employment structure in the EU in terms of occupation and sector and gives a qualitative assessment of these shifts using various proxies of job quality – wages, skill-levels, etc.

  • European Quality of Life Survey 2016

    Eurofound's European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) examines both the objective circumstances of European citizens' lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. This series consists of outputs from the EQLS 2016, the fourth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2003. 

  • European Working Conditions Survey 2015

    Eurofound’s European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) paints a wide-ranging picture of Europe at work across countries, occupations, sectors and age groups. This series consists of findings from the EWCS 2015, the sixth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • European Working Conditions Survey 1996

    Eurofound’s European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) paints a wide-ranging picture of Europe at work across countries, occupations, sectors and age groups. This series consists of findings from the EWCS 1996, the second edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • European Working Conditions Survey 2001

    Eurofound’s European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) paints a wide-ranging picture of Europe at work across countries, occupations, sectors and age groups. This series consists of findings from the EWCS 2001, which was an extension of the EWCS 2000 to cover the then 12 acceding and candidate countries. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • European Working Conditions Survey 2000

    Eurofound’s European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) paints a wide-ranging picture of Europe at work across countries, occupations, sectors and age groups. This series consists of findings from the EWCS 2000, the third edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 1990.

  • European Company Survey 2004

    Eurofound’s European Company Survey (ECS) maps and analyses company policies and practices which can have an impact on smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, as well as the development of social dialogue in companies. This series consists of outputs from the first edition of the survey carried out in 2004–2005 under the name European Establishment Survey on Working Time and Work-Life Balance. 

  • European Company Survey 2009

    Eurofound’s European Company Survey (ECS) maps and analyses company policies and practices which can have an impact on smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, as well as the development of social dialogue in companies. This series consists of outputs from the ECS 2009, the second edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2004–2005 as the European Establishment Survey on Working Time and Work-Life Balance. 

  • European Company Survey 2013

    Eurofound’s European Company Survey (ECS) maps and analyses company policies and practices which can have an impact on smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, as well as the development of social dialogue in companies. This series consists of outputs from the ECS 2013, the third edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2004–2005 as the European Establishment Survey on Working Time and Work-Life Balance.

Forthcoming publications