Labour market change

20 September 2017

The employment landscape is being reshaped continually by structural change, driven largely by technology and globalisation. But other factors such as demographic change and new business models also have very significant implications for labour market outcomes and various other aspects of the working lives of European citizens.

Since the adoption of the European employment strategy in 1997, Member States undertook to establish a set of common objectives and targets for employment policy. Its main aim is the creation of more and better jobs throughout the EU. It now constitutes part of the Europe 2020 growth strategy, and it is implemented through the European Semester, an annual process promoting close policy coordination among EU Member States and EU institutions.

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Eurofound's work

Eurofound provides information on various aspects of the labour market adjustment to structural change and how at both Member State and European levels this adjustment can best promote better living and working conditions. Changing labour markets, organisational restructuring and job creation are central to the activities in this area, as is research on  new forms of employment. Particular attention is devoted to the implications for various groups such as youth and women.

Key contributions

Recent work in this area has focused on the gender employment gap and increasing the labour market participation of women. Eurofound has also examined new forms of employment that differ from traditional employment.

A review of the employment effects of reducing non-wage labour costs for employers looks at the policy reforms adopted since 2008 across the EU Member States to stimulate labour demand. 

The European Restructuring Monitor (ERM) has been monitoring the employment impact of large-scale restructuring events in Europe since 2002.

The European Jobs Monitor (EJM) has for several years pioneered the jobs-based approach to better understand the changing employment structure in Europe.

ERM resources

Ongoing work

  • Restructuring events database: Updated daily
  • Restructuring-related legislation database: 2017 update
  • ERM report 2018  on the effects of restructuring on working conditions
  • Study on labour market segmentation
  • Study on the living wage in Europe
  • Study on support measures in the case of redundancies, with a focus on older workers
  • Study on the job creation effects of public innovation-support measures
  • Study on how workplace practices and company characteristics are associated with employment in companies

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