The election of Croatia’s new Prime Minister and government, and serious challenges to public finance over public-sector wages are the main topics of interest in this article. This country update reports on the latest developments in working life in Croatia in the first quarter of 2016.
Consultation on the renewal of industrial relations regulations, a proposal for a Charter of Universal Labour Rights, new rules on self-employment and 'smart working', and negotiations for the renewal of the collective bargaining agreement in the metalworking sector are the main topics of interest in this article. This country update reports on the latest developments in working life in Italy in the first quarter of 2016.
New rosters for Ireland’s police force, An Garda Síochána , are seen
as a key achievement under the terms of the Public Service Agreement
(2010–2014) – known as the Croke Park agreement (IE1007039I ). The
wide-ranging agreement commits the Irish Government  to maintaining core
pay and avoiding compulsory redundancy in return for trade union cooperation
with major change.
Nowadays, for many employees, successfully combining work and non-work has
become a major challenge that sometimes creates problems or conflicts. The
process whereby work demands negatively affect one’s functioning in the
home domain is defined as ‘work–home interference’. This situation is
assumed to be associated with health complaints since prolonged mental and/or
physical preoccupation with work during non-work time limits the
opportunities to recover from the effort expended at work. A sustained lack
of recovery will eventually manifest itself in health complaints. The reverse
process – that is, health complaints leading to work–home interference
– may also emerge, because it is possible that employees suffering from
health complaints are more susceptible to experiencing a negative influence
of work on their private life.
In June 2004, the National Statistical Institute (NSI ) carried out an ad
hoc labour market survey as part of the harmonised EU programme for business
and consumer surveys. The survey was conducted in the industry, retail trade
and services sectors. Employers in 3,131 enterprises were interviewed about
the employment structure in their company, the present situation and
attitudes towards increasing internal flexibility through changes in the
company’s organisation of working time.
On 19 July 2006, the Department of Safety, Health and Environment and the
Working Women’s Department of the Cyprus Workers’ Confederation
(Συνομοσπονδία Εργαζομένων Κύπρου, SΕΚ )
published a nationally representative study entitled /Safety and health in
the workplace: Reconciliation of family and work/. The study’s conclusions
were based on personal interviews in the workplace, conducted on a random
sample of 600 working women aged 18–65 years who are employed as sales
workers, cashiers and clerks. The research examined issues of safety, health
and work–life balance .
The nationwide research programme ‘Increasing the attractiveness of working
life’, conducted as part of the VETO programme (in Finnish)  under the
auspices of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health  (Sosiaali- ja
terveysministeriö), has financed projects which focus on employees who are
ageing or who have families. One such study, /Mothers and fathers in the
labour market 1989-2002/2003/, carried out in 2005 by Anita Haataja of the
Government Institute for Economic Research (Valtion taloudellinen
tutkimuskeskus, VATT ), provides background information on the position of
parents in the labour market. As the data from 2003 were flawed, some of the
results are given only up to 2002 – the timescale is specified in the text
where it includes 2003. The main research objective was to examine trends in
the employment of women and men, and to identify the extent to which
work–life balance  policies influence the situation of parents and of
those without children.
In August 2005, the National Statistics Office (NSO ) published survey
findings in a news release  outlining the different working time 
arrangements of workers in the Maltese labour market. As it is possible to
measure working time arrangements in various ways, the NSO report recorded
the number of hours normally or actually worked.
Towards the end of 2006, the Spanish Social and Economic Council (Consejo
Económico y Social, CES ) presented in its quarterly bulletin an analysis
on the issue of reconciling work and family life in Spain. This study is
based on a special module (in Spanish)  within the Labour Force Survey (in
Spanish)  carried out by the National Statistical Office (Instituto
Nacional de Estadística, INE ) and supported by Eurostat .
In March 2005, the Employment and Training Corporation (ETC ) published
the findings of a research project entitled ‘An enabling framework for
telework’ (425Kb PDF) . The study provides details of the current local
situation with regard to telework  and identifies the developmental
changes that are occurring in the labour market, most of which are due to
technological advances in the information technology (IT) sector. As no
comprehensive legal framework covering telework exists yet in Malta, this
form of work is being used on an informal or ad hoc basis.
 http://etc.gov.mt/docs/An Enabling Framework for Telework.pdf