Labour Markets

UK Trade Unions come out against Brexit

Steve Coulter of the London School of Economics welcomes publication of a letter by major UK trade unions in favour of remaining in the EU. Otherwise, the Referendum campaign risks being dominated by Conservative politicians slinging mud at each other

What do British trade unions think about Brexit? Up until now, the Referendum campaign in the UK has been dominated […]

European Works Councils at a turning point

Romuald Jagodziński of the European Trade Union Institute is critical of a recent revamp of the legislative framework for European Works Councils. He argues that implementation of the new rules has ‘castrated’ the Directive’s potential to produce positive change and calls on the Commission to try again

In 2009 European Works Councils (EWCs), the main institution of transnational information and […]

Why internal devaluation fails

Martin Myant of the European Trade Union Institute presents evidence from a new book analysing national responses to the eurozone crisis which shows that the European Commission’s gauge of competitiveness – Unit Labour Costs – was the wrong measure and contributed to disastrous policies which deepened the recession. The solution, he says, is to focus on improving competitiveness by […]

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    The results of Italy’s 2012 labour-market reforms – no solution to unemployment

The results of Italy’s 2012 labour-market reforms – no solution to unemployment

Gabriele Piazza and Martin Myant of the European Trade Union Institute criticise recent labour market reforms in Italy which aim to tackle unemployment by cutting protection for workers on permanent contracts. There is no evidence that this works, and Italy would be better off addressing structural problems in the Italian economy

In June 2012 Italy introduced a package of labour-market […]

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    Reforming UK labour regulation in or outside the EU would be hard work

Reforming UK labour regulation in or outside the EU would be hard work

Steve Coulter of the LSE outlines discussions during the recent session on labour markets of the LSE’s Commission on Britain in Europe, a major evidence-led inquiry looking at Britain’s future in the European Union in the light of the approaching referendum. The session featured employers, unions and policy analysts and discussed whether EU-inspired employment legislation helped or hindered employers […]

European Works Councils: progress and a long road ahead

Stan De Spiegelaere and Romek Jagodzinski of the European Trade Union Institute give a progress report on European Works Councils. Although EWCs continue to grow, they suffer from a lack of resources and more of third of them lack training rights in their agreements. Both sides – management and workers need to work together to make them more effective.

In […]

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    Poking the Beehive: the UK Conservative’s Trade Union Bill

Poking the Beehive: the UK Conservative’s Trade Union Bill

Steve Coulter of the London School of Economics argues that the British Conservatives’ new Trade Union Bill is more about politics than ‘repairing’ the UK’s generally good industrial relations This week the government published a Trade Union Bill that’s already being dubbed the most far-reaching change to industrial relations since, well, the heyday of the last majority Conservative government in […]

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    Spain’s labour market reforms: No solution to its employment problems

Spain’s labour market reforms: No solution to its employment problems

Martin Myant and Laszlo Horwitz of the ETUI in Brussels argue that the Spanish economy, after experiencing one of the largest falls in employment and increases in unemployment of all EU member states, is now showing some signs of recovery Since 2010, far-reaching reforms, billed as making the labour market more flexible and efficient, have been implemented. It was claimed […]

The Paradox of the ‘German Model’

Steffen Lehndorff of the University of Duisberg-Essen criticises the presentation of Germany as offering an ideal ‘model for Europe’. Instead, its labour market reforms in the early 2000s allowed it to export deflation to the rest of Europe, with disastrous consequences Paul Krugman recently stated that, ‘if you try to identify countries whose policies were way out of line before […]

Why Cameron is wrong on the ‘cost’ of migrants

Tim Vlandas of Reading University attacks David Cameron’s pre-election focus on the ‘cost’ of migrants The Prime Minister is at it again. Saddened by the rise of immigration above ‘the tens of thousands’ promised, David Cameron proposed new curbs on EU immigrants’ access to UK benefits in a recent speech. This proposal is unlikely to be feasible given current EU […]