A draft bill on further liberalisation of the electrical power market, issued
by the Greek Ministry of Development in June 2003, has provoked strong
reactions from the industry's workers, who held protest strikes in June and
In July 2003, a new national collective agreement for Italy's 200,000 postal
workers was signed by Poste Italiane SpA and sectoral trade unions. The deal
provides for a 7.5%. pay increase over two years, as well as introducing a
new job classification system and greater flexibility in working time and
forms of employment.
This article examines the French situation, as of June 2003, with regard to:
legislation and collective bargaining on the pay and conditions of posted
workers (ie workers from one EU Member State posted by their employer to work
in another); the number of such posted workers; and the views of the social
partners and government on the issue.
In May 2003, as part of the demationalisation of Hellenic Petroleum, an
agreement was signed to merge it with the Greek private sector oil company,
Petrola. The POEPDHV petrochemical workers' trade union opposes the merger on
the grounds that it is economically infeasible and furthermore claims that
the merger procedure ignored commitments to social dialogue. It called a
strike at Hellenic Petroleum in July.
July 2003 saw the launch of the Luxembourg Automobile Parts Industry (ILEA),
a new industry and employers' federation for the country's automotive parts
industry. The new body brings together 15 enterprises in this growing sector,
together employing over 8,000 workers.
Romania is currently facing large-scale redundancies as a result of the
restructuring, reorganisation and privatisation of state-owned enterprises.
In line with the government’s Emergency Ordinance No. 8/2003 regarding
incentives for such restructuring, and given that under the new Labour Code
(introduced adopted by Law No. 53/2003) such workforce reductions are to be
addressed in a different manner than in the past, a plan has been developed
to overcome the social tensions and difficulties that might arise from the
forecast redundancies. A Social Assistance Programme (Program de
Acompaniament Social, AS) was thus launched on 14 April 2003, envisaging a
better activation of local development opportunities; 13 of Romania’s
counties (out of a total of 41) are to be affected.
In July 2003, the lower chamber of the Polish parliament passed a law
regulating temporary agency work (approval by the upper house is to follow).
Agency work has been growing in Poland in recent years, and its regulation
has been debated for some time. The new legislation defines temporary agency
work and lays down rules on its use and on the employment conditions of
According to figures issued by Poland's State Labour Inspection in mid-2003,
310 new single-establishment collective agreements were registered in 2002,
covering some 118,000 employees (most Polish collective bargaining occurs at
single-employer level). The agreements' provisions primarily covered
remuneration, working time and leave. Terms more favourable to employees than
the legal minima are becoming less frequent in collective agreements, while
there is an increasing tendency for the parties to agreements to suspend
application of all or some of their provisions.
In 2002, the Ministry of Labour started a three-year experiment of using
private 'job hunters' to find work for long-term unemployed people. The
experiment has been conducted in employment offices in the largest cities.
The aim is to find jobs for people who have been unemployed for longer than
six months, or for a shorter period in the case of people with special
difficulties in finding a job - eg owing to age or disability. The job
hunters can be private firms, associations or individuals operating as
entrepreneurs. Agreements to provide such services are reached between the
employment offices and the job hunters after a competitive tender process, in
the same way as in any other public procurement. Each employment office can
reach an agreement with several job hunters, who then conclude contracts with
the unemployed people concerned, selected from candidates proposed by the
employment office. The client and the job hunter sign a three-month contract,
which can be renewed for another three months. The job hunters are paid if
they find the job seeker a non-subsidised private sector job for at least six
months. The job can be full time or part time, but the working time must be
at least 75% of the normal.
In Austria, 'minimally employed workers' (geringfügig Beschäftigter) are
defined as employees whose income per year does not exceed a fixed amount
(calculated as a monthly average) laid down by law and upgraded annually. For
2003, this monthly pay limit amounts to EUR 309.38. Nearly all minimally
employed workers are part-time workers.
Eurofound’s work on COVID-19 examines the far-reaching socioeconomic implications of the pandemic across Europe as they continue to impact living and working conditions. A key element of the research is the e-survey, launched in April 2020, with five rounds completed at different stages during 2020, 2021 and 2022. This is complemented by the inclusion of research into the ongoing effects of the pandemic in much of Eurofound’s other areas of work.
Eurofound's representativeness studies are designed to allow the European Commission to identify the ‘management and labour’ whom it must consult under article 154 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). This series consists of studies of the representativeness of employer and worker organisations in various sectors.
This series reports on developments in minimum wage rates across the EU, including how they are set and how they have developed over time in nominal and real terms. The series explores where there are statutory minimum wages or collectively agreed minimum wages in the Member States, as well as minimum wage coverage rates by gender.
The European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) launched in 1990 and is carried out every five years, with the latest edition in 2015. It provides an overview of trends in working conditions and quality of employment for the last 30 years. It covers issues such as employment status, working time duration and organisation, work organisation, learning and training, physical and psychosocial risk factors, health and safety, work–life balance, worker participation, earnings and financial security, work and health, and most recently also the future of work.
The European Restructuring Monitor has reported on the employment impact of large-scale business restructuring since 2002. This series includes its restructuring-related databases (events, support instruments and legislation) as well as case studies and publications.
Eurofound’s Flagship report series 'Challenges and prospects in the EU' comprise research reports that contain the key results of multiannual research activities and incorporate findings from different related research projects. Flagship reports are the major output of each of Eurofound’s strategic areas of intervention and have as their objective to contribute to current policy debates.
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 2019, the fourth edition of the survey. The survey was first carried out in 2004–2005 as the European Survey on Working Time and Work-Life Balance.
This series reports on and updates latest information on the involvement of national social partners in policymaking. The series analyses the involvement of national social partners in the implementation of policy reforms within the framework of social dialogue practices, including their involvement in elaborating the National Reform Programmes (NRPs).
This series reports on the new forms of employment emerging across Europe that are driven by societal, economic and technological developments and are different from traditional standard or non-standard employment in a number of ways. This series explores what characterises these new employment forms and what implications they have for working conditions and the labour market.
The European Company Survey (ECS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2004–2005, with the latest edition in 2019. The survey is designed to provide information on workplace practices to develop and evaluate socioeconomic policy in the EU. It covers issues around work organisation, working time arrangements and work–life balance, flexibility, workplace innovation, employee involvement, human resource management, social dialogue, and most recently also skills use, skills strategies and digitalisation.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the electricity sector. Their relative representativeness legitimises their right to be consulted, their role and effective participation in the European sectoral social dialogue and their capacity to negotiate agreements. The aim of this Eurofound study on representativeness is to identify the relevant national and European social partner organisations in the electricity sector in the EU Member States.
This paper provides an analytical summary of state of the art academic and policy literature on the impact of climate change and policies to manage transitions to a carbon neutral economy on employment, working conditions, social dialogue and living conditions. It maps the key empirical findings around the impact of climate change and the green transitions on jobs, sectors, regions and countries in Europe, identifying the opportunities and risks that climate change policies bring to European labour markets.
Given that compliance with lockdown measures is a first line of defence against COVID-19, maintaining trust in institutions is vital to ensure a coordinated, comprehensive and effective response to the pandemic. This report investigates developments in institutional and interpersonal trust across time, with a particular emphasis on the COVID-19 pandemic period and its impact. It examines the link between trust and discontent and investigates the effect of multidimensional inequalities as a driver of distrust.
The civil aviation sector has been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is one of the most severe crises the sector has ever experienced, giving rise to a number of significant challenges for companies and workers alike. This study will explore the role of social dialogue and collective bargaining in how the sector is adapting to the pandemic. What kinds of changes have been introduced, either through social dialogue or collective bargaining? Are the changes temporary or permanent?
This policy brief will provide an update on upward convergence in the economic, social and institutional dimensions of the European Union, as outlined in the European Pillar of Social Rights and its accompanying Social Scoreboard.
Lockdown measures and the economic shift following the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a widening of the gender divide between men and women, putting at risk some of the gender equality gains that had been made in previous years. This report analyses changes in the distribution of paid and unpaid work, along with care and domestic responsibilities, among men and women during the crisis. It also explores the impact of the pandemic on the well-being of women and men.
The report provides an overview of the scale of teleworking before and during the COVID-19 crisis and gives an indication of ‘teleworkability’ across sectors and occupations. Building on previous Eurofound research on remote work, the report investigates the way businesses introduced and supported teleworking during the pandemic, as well as the experience of workers who were working from home during the crisis. The report also looks at developments in regulations related to telework in Member States and provides a review of stakeholders’ positions.
The hospital sector has been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Hospitals and their workers are on the frontline in the fight against the virus, and they face a number of significant challenges in terms of resources, work organisation and working conditions. This study will explore the role of social dialogue and collective bargaining in how the sector is adapting to the pandemic. What kinds of changes have been introduced, either through social dialogue or collective bargaining? Are the changes temporary or permanent?
The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have varied across sectors, occupations and categories of worker (for instance, according to gender, age or employment status). Hours worked have declined the most in sectors such as accommodation services and food and beverage services, and in occupations heavily reliant on in-person interaction, such as sales work. At the same time, it’s in these sectors that labour shortages have become increasingly evident as labour markets have begun to normalise.
This report analyses the working lives of workers in Europe in 2021, when the continent was still in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic. It examines working conditions during that period and the association between job quality and work outcomes such as health and well-being, work–life balance, and financial security. The report also considers how the shifts in working life during the pandemic are likely to affect work in the future.