New Turns in European Industrial Relations –
Industrial Relations in Europe Conference (IREC) 2-4 September 2020
Currently, the traditional industrial relations are challenged by various new trends like digitalisation, self-employment, globalisation, environmental crises, ageing labour force etc. Furthermore, the continuous growth of the service sector has replaced manufacturing as the greatest employer in the world. As a result, employment, trade unions, collective bargaining all have gradually become more female. In many European countries majority of trade union members have for several years been women.
After decades of new liberal deregulation, many important global institutions have started to promote decent work, labour protection and minimum wages. Trade unions and collective bargaining are no more words to be avoid in the seeking of better working life. Already OECD Employment Outlook 2017 stated: “Collective bargaining can contribute to worker-friendly adjustments to potentially disruptive change.” It has been recognized that policies and institutions that protect workers and advance inclusiveness in the changing labour market are also needed for good outcomes.
The new winds among the essential pace setters and planners have not yet had any impact on the decline of union density and diminishing coverage of collective bargaining in European Countries, on the contrary, in many cases the state has taken responsibility e.g. to legislate minimum wage.
The theme is in IREC2020, New Turns in European Industrial Relations is broad, open and optimistic. Empirical and theoretical approaches deliver interesting insights into the future trends in in European industrial relations. IREC is a multidisciplinary forum and welcomes empirical and theoretical contributions using imaginative and creative analysis as well as research with more traditional methodology.