European Pillar of Social Rights
23 January 2023
The EU institutions jointly proclaimed the European Pillar of Social Rights in November 2017, followed by an action plan for its implementation in March 2021. The initiative sets out 20 principles aimed at ‘delivering new and effective rights for citizens’.Read more
The EU institutions jointly proclaimed the European Pillar of Social Rights in November 2017, followed by an action plan for its implementation in March 2021. The initiative sets out 20 principles aimed at ‘delivering new and effective rights for citizens’. The key principles are structured around three categories: equal opportunities and access to the labour market; fair working conditions; and social protection and inclusion. The Pillar serves as the EU’s compass for achieving better living and working conditions and supporting the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Listen to our Eurofound Talks podcast with European Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, Nicolas Schmit, about implementing the European Pillar of Social Rights and making Europe a better, fairer, greener and more digital place to live and work.
- Infographic: Eurofound’s contribution to the European Pillar of Social Rights
- Eurofound Talks: Social Europe more urgent than ever, with Nicolas Schmit
European Parliament hearing with Eurofound and EU Agencies
Eurofound presentation to the European Parliament Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL)
2022 in review
On 14 January 2020, the European Commission published its Communication setting out its social policy ambitions and describing the challenges to be overcome in the EU.Read more
On 14 January 2020, the European Commission published its Communication setting out its social policy ambitions and describing the challenges to be overcome in the EU. Implementing the European Pillar of Social Rights will be crucial to achieving a strong social Europe and bringing fairness to the daily lives of citizens. It is the social strategy to ensure that the transitions in the Commission’s objectives around climate neutrality, digitalisation and demographic change are socially just and fair.
On 4 March 2021, the Commission presented its action plan to fully implement the Pillar. The action plan sets out its ambition for a strong social Europe that focuses on jobs and skills and paves the way for a fair, inclusive and resilient recovery from the crisis. It turns the 20 principles into concrete measures and actions to ensure that the Pillar becomes a reality for citizens in their daily lives, setting new 2030 targets for employment, skills and social protection.
The updated Social Scoreboard, accompanying the Pillar, aims to monitor the performance of Member States in the employment and social field along the various dimensions outlined in the Pillar to check progress in its implementation.
- European Commission: The European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan
- European Commission: The European Pillar of Social Rights in 20 principles
- European Commission: A strong social Europe for just transitions
- Eurostat: European Pillar of Social Rights – Social Scoreboard of Indicators
Eurofound will be an essential knowledge source for the EU institutions, Member States and social partners in implementing the initiatives of the Pillar in 2021 and beyond. The Agency has generated a wealth of evidence on topics central to the Pillar including minimum wages, gender equality, youth employment, skills and training, platform work, an ageing society and social protection.
A compendium of articles organised around the European Commission’s six priorities for Europe presents a snapshot of some of the research areas linked with the Pillar; important questions for the EU institutions over the next decade; and trends that we have observed in quality of life and working conditions throughout the EU.
Eurofound’s 2021–2024 work programme sets out a schedule of projects that will provide valuable insights for realising the goals of the Pillar.
- About Eurofound: What we do: EU priorities
- Publication: Priorities for a new Europe
- Publication: Programming document 2021–2024: Towards recovery and resilience
Ongoing research on developments in minimum wages across the EU Member States reports on how they are set and how they have developed in nominal and real terms. This is a topic where Eurofound has a well-established track record.
- Topic: Minimum wage
Eurofound research topics include pay transparency in Europe, women in management, funding of female entrepreneurship, discrimination against men at work, and gender equality at work.
- Topic: Gender equality
Eurofound has almost a decade of findings to support this topic, analysing the population of young people not in employment, education or training (NEETs), the adverse consequences of this and estimated loss to the EU economy, as well as policy approaches to address long-term youth unemployment.
Skills and training
Extensive research about skills in the European workplace includes information on training, work organisation and job design, and skills mismatches. Skills and training needs are also featuring in research on digitalisation and platform work.
- Topic: Skills and training
Research has analysed the most prevalent types of platform work as regards employment and working conditions.
- Topic: Platform work
Eurofound has extensively mapped measures to retain and reintegrate older workers into the labour market, such as flexible working options offering more sustainable employment. Research on work after retirement in the EU highlights the need to tackle gender income gaps.
- Topic: Ageing workforce
- Topic: Retirement
Eurofound’s European Quality of Life Survey analyses the persistent challenges to certain age groups and raises issues around the effectiveness of social protection.
- Topic: Living conditions and quality of life
- Topic: Social protection
Key outputs over the years
Publications & dataTop
The sections below provide access to a range of publications, data and ongoing work on this topic.
- Publications (60)
- Ongoing work
Eurofound publications come in a variety of formats, including reports, policy briefs, blogs, articles and presentations.
European Parliament hearing with Eurofound and EU AgenciesEvent 24 January 2023
Eurofound presentation to the European Parliament Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL)Presentation 23 January 2023
2022 in reviewBlog 19 December 2022
European Employment and Social Rights Forum - The social dimension of the green transitionEvent 16 November 2022
Challenges and solutions: Case studies on European Works CouncilsPublication 25 October 2022
Tripartite Exchange Seminar 'Summer Forum'Event 19 October 2022
COVID-19 pandemic and the gender divide at work and homePublication 13 October 2022
Access to essential services for people on low incomes: Energy, public transport and digital communicationsPublication 7 September 2022
Moving with the times: Emerging practices and provisions in collective bargainingPublication 31 August 2022
A selection of related data on this topic are linked below.
Research continues in this topic on a variety of themes, which are outlined below with links to forthcoming titles.