Social partners

09 July 2020

Trade unions, employers’ organisations and public institutions play a key role in the governance of the employment relationship, working conditions and industrial relations structures. They are interlocking parts in a multilevel system of governance that includes the European, national, sectoral, regional (provincial or local) and company levels.  Social partners is a term generally used in Europe to refer to representatives of management and labour (employers ’organisations and trade unions). European social partners are those organisations at EU level which are engaged in the European social dialogue.

Ongoing work

  • Exploration of the role of national social partners in the European semester and analysis of quality and effectiveness of their involvement
  • Other representativeness studies on a variety of sectors to provide the European Commission required information to assess the representativeness of European sectoral social partner organisations.


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