The Austrian Government is aiming to finalise its pension reform effort
(AT9707118F ) before the end of 1997. Essentially it consists of two
components: lowering pension entitlements and widening the contributor base
to the four national pension schemes. The latter is to be achieved by
including the self-employed as well as part-timers earning less than the
subsistence minimum, and by placing disincentives in the way of early
retirement. These discincentives are designed as a trade-off between the
length of the retirement and the size of the pension. For every year of
retirement before the standard pension eligibility age - ie 60 for women and
65 for men - the pension is to be reduced by 2%. Expert advice was to
institute a 4% reduction per year. The lowering of pension entitlements, in
addition to this trade-off element, has a number of other components, chiefly
the lengthening of the base period on which pensions are computed from 15 to
20 years in the case of early retirement, and a new formula for pension
adjustments from the year 2000. The new formula is to be thrashed out by
experts in 1998. The longer base period, according to the Austrian Trade
Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB), will result in
new pensions being 4% to 5% lower on average than they would be with a
15-year base period. In the civil service, no such base period currently
exists, and here the Government intends gradually to introduce a 15-year base
period between 1999 and 2012.
On 10 September 1997, the economic part of the industry-wide collective
agreement for the Italian shoe sector was renewed for the two-year period
1997/8. The contract foresees increases in wages and the setting up of a
common supplementary pension fund for the workers of both the shoe sector and
the textile and clothing sector.
In September 1997, the French Government presented a bill establishing a new
scheme to create 350,000 jobs in the public and non-profit sectors for young
people. We review the contents of the plan and the reactions of the social
A new study by Dublin's Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) -
"Earnings distribution and returns to education in Ireland, 1987-94", Alan
Barrett, Tim Callen and Brian Nolan, ESRI Working Paper 85, June 1997- shows
that there has been a higher degree of wage dispersion than might have been
expected in Ireland, but that this may be largely explained by increased
returns to higher education over the period of the study. Published in June
1997, the study also shows that by 1994, Ireland had one of the highest
levels of low-paid workers in the OECD.
The "Medium-term Employment Plan" published by the Spanish Government in
September 1997 consolidates into one text all existing measures aimed at
creating employment and improving its quality. The text calls for secure
employment and even refers to the possible creation of a million jobs by
The conclusion in July 1997 (EU9707141N ) of the recommendation framework
agreement on the improvement of paid employment in agriculture stands at the
end of a long process of negotiation between the European social partners in
the sector. The partners are GEOPA- the Employers' Group of theCommittee of
Agricultural Organisations in the European Union (COPA) - which represents
those agricultural undertakings in Europe which employ paid staff, and the
European Federation of Agricultural Workers' Unions (EFA), - one of the
European industry committees of the European Trade Union Confederation
In September 1997, Amsterdam's dock workers employed by the Association of
Dock Industries organised protests after the Randstad temporary employment
agency decided not to become involved in an SHB financial rescue plan when
its bankruptcy appeared imminent. Some 150 employees are likely to be made
On 21 July 1997, the Italian subsidiaries of the Electrolux-Zanussi group and
trade unions agreed to relaunch the company's participative industrial
relations system, which had broken down earlier in the year.
Danish employees feel less job insecurity than their counterparts in other
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, it
emerges from a report in the OECD's 1997 Employment Outlook . On average,
seven out of 10 employees in the OECD countries examined disagree with the
statement "my job is secure", whereas in Denmark only four out of 10
employees do so. In contrast to most OECD countries, there is no difference
discernible in feelings on job security between white- and blue-collar Danish
employees, nor between employees in industry, services or public
administration. In other OECD countries, blue-collar employees in industry
and the services sector feel more insecure about their jobs than white-collar
workers in public administration.
In Spain, where wage costs have grown far less than productivity, pay
restraint has been the trend. This feature examines trends in real unit
labour costs, real pay and pay differentials across the Spanish economy over
the last 15 years.
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.
The European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) launched in 1990 and is carried out every five years, with the latest edition in 2020. 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 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 two rounds – in April and in July 2020. 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 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.
The European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) is carried out every four to five years since its inception in 2003, with the latest edition in 2016. It examines both the objective circumstances of people's lives and how they feel about those circumstances and their lives in general. It covers issues around employment, income, education, housing, family, health and work–life balance. It also looks at subjective topics, such as people's levels of happiness and life satisfaction, and perceptions of the quality of society.
How can working conditions be improved to make work more sustainable over the life course? This question has been the guiding principle for analysis of the 2015 European Working Conditions Survey data during the period of Eurofound’s work programme for 2017–2020. This flagship report brings together the different research strands from this work and gives a comprehensive answer to the question. It includes an analysis of trends in working conditions, examining whether these are the same for all workers or whether inequalities between different groups of workers are increasing.
Access to key social services, especially education and healthcare, as well as stable family life and decent housing are necessary for the well-being and development of children. Ensuring that all children have these resources is an EU priority; the European Commission is currently undertaking to recommend a Child Guarantee to address the situations of children in need. Service provision has been complicated by the COVID-19 outbreak, however, and the pandemic has put psychological and material strains on families.
This report builds on Eurofound's existing research on social mobility, assessing the distribution and transmission of wealth in Member States. It examines the roles of inheritance and household debt in explaining the transmission of advantage or disadvantage between the generations across Member States. The analysis is based on Eurosystem's Household Finance and Consumption Survey (HFCS).
This report analyses the involvement of the national social partners in the implementation of policy reforms within the framework of social dialogue practices, and their involvement in elaborating the National Reform Programmes (NRPs) and other key policy documents of the European Semester cycle.
This report will focus on assessing the employment impact of the COVID-19 crisis, including its effects across sectors and for different categories of workers. It will also be looking at measures implemented to limit negative effects following the Coronavirus outbreak in Europe.
This report examines the contribution of social and employment services in EU Member States to the inclusion of people with disabilities, specifically in relation to the impact these have on labour market integration – in line with the 2006 UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The report includes a discussion of the costs and benefits of different approaches.
This report examines people's optimism about the future, for themselves and for others, and the extent to which it varies depending on one's social situation and perceptions of the quality of society. The study includes an analysis of the relationships between people’s perceptions of fairness and objective indicators of their social and economic situation and living standards.
This study provides information allowing for an assessment of the representativeness of the actors involved in the European sectoral social dialogue committee for the civil aviation (flight crew) 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 European Green Deal is at the very top of Member State agendas across the EU. This topical update maps the national discussions – in policy, public and research debates – on the potential, ongoing or already felt impact on work and employment of the transition to a low-carbon economy. It attempts to identify the most active actors involved in these discussions (governments, social partners, NGOs and so on) and their perspectives.
This report will draw from case studies of establishments across the EU that have introduced advanced digital technologies in the workplace. The technologies in focus are the Internet of Things, 3D printing and virtual and augmented reality. Each case study – illustrated in the report - will explore the approach or strategy taken by the establishment to manage the digital transition and the impact of the deployment of the technology on the work organisation and job quality.