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.
The European Restructuring Monitor (ERM) has reported on the employment impact of large-scale business restructuring since 2002. This publication series include the ERM reports, as well as blogs, articles and working papers on restructuring-related events in the EU27 and Norway.
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 European Working Conditions Telephone Survey (EWCTS) 2021, an extraordinary edition conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey was first carried out in 1990.
This publication series gathers all overview reports on developments in working life, annual reviews in industrial relations and working conditions produced by Eurofound on the basis of national contributions from the Network of Eurofound Correspondents (NEC). Since 1997, these reports have provided overviews of the latest developments in industrial relations and working conditions across the EU and Norway. The series may include recent ad hoc articles written by members of the NEC.
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.
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).
In 2022, the European Semester was streamlined to integrate the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) established on 19 February 2021 (Regulation (EU) 2021/241). While facing the geopolitical and economic challenges triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Member States have been implementing the national Recovery and Resilience Plans (RRPs) for more than one year and around 100 billion euro in RRF funds have already been disbursed.
This report explores the association between skills use and skills strategies and establishment performance, and how other workplace practices, in terms of work organisation, human resources management and employee involvement, can impact on this. It looks at how skills shortages can be addressed, at least in part, by creating an environment in which employees are facilitated and motivated to make better use of the skills they already have. This further supports the business case for a more holistic approach to management.
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.
As part of its response to Russia’s war on Ukraine, the EU swiftly activated its Temporary Protection Directive for those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine – enabling displaced persons to settle in the EU and have access to the labour market and basic public services. This policy brief highlights the main barriers encountered by these refugees (over 5 million people to date) when seeking a job and provides suggestions on how to facilitate their integration.
Living and working in Europe, Eurofound’s 2022 yearbook, provides a snapshot of the latest developments in the work and lives of Europeans as explored in the Agency’s research activities over the course of 2022. Eurofound’s research on working and living conditions in Europe provides a bedrock of evidence for input into social policymaking and achieving the Agency’s vision ‘to be Europe’s leading knowledge source for better life and work’.
The term ‘hybrid work’ became popular due to the upsurge of telework during the COVID-19 pandemic. The term has been increasingly used to refer to situations in which (teleworkable) work is performed both from the usual place of work (normally the employer’s premises) and from home (as experienced during the pandemic) or other locations. However, the concept of hybrid work is still blurry, and various meanings are in use. This topical update brings clarity to this concept by exploring available information from recent literature and the Network of Eurofound Correspondents.
Housing affordability is a matter of great concern across the EU. Poor housing affordability leads to housing evictions, housing insecurity, problematic housing costs and housing inadequacy. These problems negatively affect health and well-being, create unequal living conditions and opportunities, and come with healthcare costs, reduced productivity and environmental damage. Private market tenants face particularly large increases in the cost of housing.
With the expansion of telework and different forms of hybrid work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for policymakers to consider both the opportunities and the negative consequences that may result. This report will explore potential scenarios for such work. In doing so, it will identify trends and drivers, and predict how they might interact to create particular outcomes and how they are likely to affect workers and businesses. Policy pointers will outline what could be done to facilitate desirable outcomes and to avoid undesirable ones.
Eurofound's annual review of minimum wages reports on the development of statutory and collectively agreed minimum wages across the EU and the processes through which they were set. The focus of this year’s report is on the impact of high inflation on the setting of minimum wage rates. In addition, new figures on the net value of minimum wages are presented, along with the latest policy-relevant research in the EU Member States and Norway.
Building on previous work by Eurofound, this report will investigate intergenerational dynamics over time. During the 2008 double-dip recession, worrying intergenerational divides appeared in many Member States, and while some of the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is universal, early data suggests disparities across demographic cohorts. Eurofound will examine how different age groups may have been affected in terms of their health, labour market participation, quality of life and financial needs, both in the short term and in the long term.