Labour Markets

Worker’s rights in the digital age

Christophe Degryse of the ETUI argues that, while digitalisation of the economy is inevitable, its effects on labour markets and working lives need to be managed carefully, otherwise we are in for an increasingly polarised and unequal society. The main concerns with digital platforms are the trend towards deregulation and the failure to comply with social legislation. It is difficult, […]

The unlikely cure for populism: democracy at work

Stan De Spiegelaere of the ETUI proposes a cure for populism – democracy at work. After all, he argues,  if we want political democracy to succeed then we need citizens to have practical experiences with participation and involvement. Where better to acquire this experience than the workplace?

Trump in the White House, Orban in Hungary, the Law and Justice party […]

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    The Country-Specific Recommendations and the European Pillar of Social Rights – a step in the right direction?

The Country-Specific Recommendations and the European Pillar of Social Rights – a step in the right direction?

Stefan Clauwaert, the ETUI’s legal expert, has analysed the EU Commission’ s country-specific recommendations for 2018-2019, and argues that they show the clear influence of the European Pillar of Social Rights.  While this is a good sign, he argues that in several crucial areas they do not live up to the promise shown at the time that the CSRs were originally introduced. 

The […]

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    The impact of digitalisation on the quantity and quality of work. An Austrian perspective

The impact of digitalisation on the quantity and quality of work. An Austrian perspective

Reinhard Haider of the Upper Austria Chamber of Labour examines the labour market effects of digitalisation and the blurring of boundaries between work and private life. He argues that increased digitalisation and automation will significantly change and affect both the quality and quantity of jobs. New forms of jobs and employment in turn are affecting working conditions by altering […]

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    Knowledge abilities are the key to coping with the digitalisation of the workplace

Knowledge abilities are the key to coping with the digitalisation of the workplace

Sociology of Knowledge Professor Nico Stehr and LSE’s Dustin Voss criticise the current digitalisation debate that is dominated by naïve and simple calls for reskilling the workforce. Rather, we should focus on promoting so-called knowledge abilities to effectively empower employees to cope with a rapidly changing working environment.

In a recent Foresight Brief of the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI), Aìda […]

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    The World(s) of work in Transition: Managing the ‘Megatrends’ impacting Labour Markets and Society

The World(s) of work in Transition: Managing the ‘Megatrends’ impacting Labour Markets and Society

Steve Coulter of the ETUI and LSE suggests that the four ‘megatrends’ of globalisation, digitalisation, climate change and demographic transition should be analysed together, not separately. That way, common solutions may be found. For example, technology is both a disruptor (of companies and jobs) and solution (to climate change and an ageing population). Managing change cannot be left to the […]

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    The Origins and Nature of Modern Day Populism: Labour Market Dualisation and Political Alienation

The Origins and Nature of Modern Day Populism: Labour Market Dualisation and Political Alienation

Dustin Voss of the London School of Economics investigates the politico-economic origins of populism in his latest LEQS working paper. Comparing Germany and Spain, he notes that populism as a distinct form of protest voting has its roots in perceived labour market inequalities and he argues that sustained flexibilisation and casualisation in low-wage sectors stokes political outrage. In order […]

This time is really different: back to robots and work

Bob Hancké of the LSE writes that Judy Wajcman of the LSE’s Sociology Department wrote a fascinating review of the debate (a big word for some of the books she mentions, but let’s not be too picky) on automation and work. She rightly alerts readers to the techno-optimism (and related social catastrophism) that dominates the debate. She raises a […]

The gap between wages and productivity

Bela Galgoczi of the European Trade Union Institute examines why wages and productivity – essential for a fair distribution of the spoils of economic growth – have increasingly decoupled from each other in many countries

The decoupling of wages from productivity – a widespread phenomenon with wage growth having been lagging behind productivity in the last decades – has not […]

Capitalism and socialism: Marx’s bicentenary

Bob Hancké of the LSE explains how Marx was capitalism’s greatest admirer as well as its sharpest critic

Imagine for a moment that Karl Marx had been born in 1806 instead of 1818. The 200th anniversary of his birth would have given rise to triumphant retrospectives in much of the right-wing press of the collapse of the Soviet system in 1989 […]