In June 2003, management and trade unions signed a preliminary agreement on a
unified collective agreement for two of Spain's nuclear power plants, those
at Almaraz and Trillo. This may represent the first step towards a sectoral
agreement for the sector, where bargaining currently occurs at plant level.
In summer 2003, France's Minister of Health announced that a reform of the
sickness insurance system is to be presented in the autumn. While an
increasing deficit posted by the sickness insurance funds has made this
overhaul necessary, industrial relations tensions in the healthcare sector
suggest that implementation may be problematic. The details of the reform are
as yet unknown, but the major thrust appears to be a reduction in compulsory
sickness insurance cover and the creation of specific measures for
Die Erweiterung der Europäischen Union, bei der voraussichtlich ab 2004 bis
zu 12 Länder Mittel- und Osteuropas sowie des Mittelmeerraums der EU
beitreten werden, rückt immer näher. Vor diesem Hintergrund hat das
Europäische Observatorium für die Entwicklung der Arbeitsbeziehungen (EIRO)
die Erfassung der Entwicklungen im Bereich der Arbeitsbeziehungen auf die
beitrittswilligen Länder ausgeweitet.
Arbeitskämpfe - Streiks, Aussperrungen usw. - sind einer der vorrangigsten
Aspekte von Arbeitsbeziehungen, nicht zuletzt in Bezug auf ihre Behandlung in
den Medien sowie hinsichtlich ihrer Auswirkungen auf die und ihre Beachtung
in der Öffentlichkeit. In manchen Quellen werden Arbeitskämpfe als
wichtiger Indikator für das Funktionieren von Systemen im Bereich der
Arbeitsbeziehungen betrachtet, wobei Arbeitskämpfe zum Teil als Zeichen für
die Fehlfunktion eines Systems betrachtet werden, während sie von anderen
als ein ralativ normales Merkmal eines gesunden und gut funktionierenden
Systems angesehen werden. Im Juni 2001 veröffentlichte die Europäische
Kommission eine Mitteilung über Beschäftigungs- und Sozialpolitik: ein
Konzept für Investitionen in Qualität . In diesem Dokument werden Wege
und Möglichkeiten zur Förderung der 'Qualität' in der Beschäftigungs- und
Sozialpolitik vorgeschlagen; es enthält ferner Vorschläge für eine Reihe
von Indikatoren zur Messung dieser Qualität. Einer der unter 'Sozialer
Dialog und Arbeitnehmermitbestimmung' aufgeführten Indikatoren sind 'durch
Arbeitskämpfe verlorene Arbeitstage'.
In its 2002 'Report on industrial accidents and occupational illnesses',
Spain's UGT trade union confederation examines the country's high industrial
accident and illness rate and seeks to identify the causes. These are found
to to be lack of compliance with the relevant legislation by companies, and
the high level of subcontracting, temporary contracts and temporary agency
work, which particularly affects young workers.
Les actions syndicales - grèves, lock-outs, etc. - sont l’un des aspects
les plus visibles des relations industrielles, notamment en termes de
couverture médiatique et d’impact sur le public. Ces actions sont souvent
considérées comme un indicateur important du bon fonctionnement ou non du
système de relations industrielles, les actions syndicales étant perçues
par certains comme un signe de dysfonctionnement du système alors que pour
d’autres, il s’agit d’une caractéristique assez normale d’un
système en bonne santé fonctionnant correctement. En juin 2001, la
Commission européenne a publié une communication intitulée Politiques
sociales et de l’emploi: un cadre pour investir dans la qualité . Ce
document propose différentes façons de promouvoir la 'qualité' dans
l’emploi et la politique sociale et prévoit un ensemble d’indicateurs
pour mesurer cette qualité. Un des indicateurs en termes de 'dialogue social
et participation des travailleurs' porte sur les 'journées de travail
perdues à la suite de conflits du travail'.
In summer 2003, work is due to start on a revision of the Toledo pact, the
1995 agreement on the Spanish pensions system, in the light of gloomy
demographic and expenditure forecasts. The government is seeking various
changes, notably linking pensions to contributions paid over the entire
career, the development of private pension schemes, a halt to early
retirement and an increase in the retirement age. A recent European
Commission report has contributed to the debate.
In June 2003, the Cologne Institute for Business Research (Institut der
deutschen Wirtschaft, IW ) published a report which finds that a 40-hour
working week (or longer) is still a reality for 44% of all employees in
eastern Germany. Moreover, only slightly more than one-fifth of all west
German employees have a 35-hour week, while over half work 38 hours a week or
more. The figures - see table 1 below - indicate that the 35-hour week is
less common in Germany than is commonly thought.
New legislation adopted in May 2003 makes important changes to the employment
conditions and status of Luxembourg's 21,000 civil servants. For example,
civil servants will now find it easier to work part time and will have a more
transparent disciplinary procedure. The age limit for starting work in the
civil service has been raised from 40 to 45 years of age, teleworking is now
possible, and equality delegates are to be appointed in all administrative
In late April 2003, the management of the Arcelor steel group and trade
unions at Cockerill Sambre, its subsidiary in Wallonia, Belgium, reached
agreement on the gradual closure of the company's blast furnaces in Liège.
This feature examines the changing objectives and strategies of management,
the unions and the Walloon regional government during the affair, and
outlines Arcelor's latest investment project in Wallonia along with a number
of unresolved problems.
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.
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, conducted in three rounds – in April and July 2020 and in March 2021. This is complemented by the inclusion of research into the ongoing effects of the pandemic in much of Eurofound’s other areas of work.
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.
Eurofound's representativness 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 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 report investigates the convergence of Member States in various dimensions of living conditions. Indicators are drawn from the European Quality of Life Surveys and other surveys. The analysis pays special attention to particular subgroups such as young people and women. The analysis also investigates the key drivers of convergence in living conditions.
This joint publication with the European Environment Agency (EEA) presents the findings from complementary research carried out simultaneously by both agencies on the socioeconomic impacts of climate policies and measures. While Eurofound focuses particularly on the distributional effects of these policies based on the experiences of Member States, the EEA analyses scientific research about the monetary and non-monetary social impacts of climate mitigation policies and its outcome in terms of inequalities.
This report addresses the main developments in statutory and collectively agreed working time regulation in 2019 and 2020. It covers several aspects of the duration of working time in the EU, such as information on maximum numbers of working days and weeks, normal working weeks and paid annual leave across the countries and within selected sectors. The report focuses on the education, health, transport, retail and public administration sectors, and provides accounts of major developments in working time regulation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This policy brief uses the data from the European Company Survey 2019 to examine the workplace practices of export-oriented companies and to analyse how these practices relate to outcomes. It also examines why these companies choose the workplace practices they adopt.
This report examines the labour market changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has affected sectors and occupations quite differently. It identifies those labour market categories most exposed to negative labour market outcomes. It analyses how differences in confinement and public health approaches may have contributed to different outcomes. It addresses previous assessments of the extent of occupational ‘teleworkability’ and of the sectoral impact of confinement rules. The report draws on EU Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS) data for its analysis.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the audiovisual 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 audiovisual sector in the EU Member States.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the live performance 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 live performance sector in the EU Member States.
This report analyses and compares the industrial relations landscape in a number of sectors and activities that form a public service cluster. The report draws on Eurofound’s recent representativeness studies investigating the following sectors: education, human health, central government administration and local and regional government sector (including social services).
Building on Eurofound’s previous research on youth, this report examines the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on young people, in particular their economic and social situation, with a focus on employment. It will also estimate how the NEET population – young people not in employment, education or training – has changed in size and composition over the last decade, and how the current crisis might affect this.
This report explores the impact of the use of digital technologies on work organisation and job quality, as well as the role of social dialogue and employee involvement in the digitisation process. The three technologies analysed are the Internet of Things, 3D printing, and virtual and augmented reality. The report draws on the views of experts and policy stakeholders and includes insights from 10 case studies of European establishments that have deployed one or more of the three digital technologies.