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In this section we present useful documents, training material and papers on European Works Councils (SE). Further resources on our website include the Frequent questions on EWC and the NEWS section, and the Facts and Figures slides. For detailed information on EWC agreements visit also our EWC Database.

Information and resources on the new EWC Directive can be found in the recast section.

ETUI and ETUC Benchmarking Working Europe 2014

The report – available in PDF format and print – reviews the crisis and EU austerity policies in the past five years from the point of view of Europe's social agenda. It comprises a critical, fact-based diagnosis of the first five years of the EU’s crisis management policies in view of the Europe 2020 agenda. It suggests that Europe finds itself “half-way through a lost decade” and provides the scientific underpinning of the ETUC’s political roadmap for a ‘new path for Europe’. Chapter 7 takes stock of workers’ rights to information, consultation and board-level employee representation at both the national and transnational levels. Chapter 4 conducts a stocktaking exercise in relation to the last five years of significant labour law reforms, including information and consultation rights.

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IGBCE BWS (2013) Training, education, advice and management for EWCs. A manual for trainers and lecturers

In November 2013, the Gesellschaft für Bildung, Wissen, Seminar of the German mining, chemical and energy trade union IGBCE published a new manual designed mainly for EWC trainers, coaches and lecturers. The key focus of the publication is the development of intercultural competence, legal and organisational frameworks for EWCs, as well as target-setting and decision-making processes. The manual was prepared by TEAM.EWC, a consortium of German, Austrian and Romanian trade unions within the framework of a Leonardo da Vinci innovation transfer project.

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Manual for European Workers’ Representatives: 01 How to make your meetings more successful

The booklet was developed by the European Workers’ Participation Competence Centre (EWPCC). It is the first of a series of practical and helpfully illustrated manuals for workers’ representatives in transnational information and consultation bodies. The first manual offers some practical tips on how to make meetings European bodies (auch as EWC or SE works councils) more useful, more efficient and more successful. The manual is currently available in eight languages and can be downloaded as pdf (EN, FR, SW, ES, NL, DE, PL, GR).

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The EWC landscape on the eve of the transposition deadline of the recast directive 2009/38/EC Evidence from the ETUI database of European Works Councils

The present brochure which has been published for the ETUC Congress in Athens contains pre-selected data from the forthcoming ETUI publication ‘Mapping European Works Councils’. It aims at delivering basic figures (from the ETUI database of EWCs) concerning the operation of EWCs and the workers they represent on the eve of the EWC recast directive’s transposition deadline. The provided information will allow evaluation of the new legislation’s impact on EWCs as it will offer a point of reference for measuring the attainment of some of the goals set by the recast directive. It will also be of particular relevance in relation to the goal of increasing the number of EWCs.

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Transfer issue on employee participation at company level and social dialogue

L’objectif de ce numéro de Transfer est de faire le point sur les différentes initiatives de la Commission dans les domaines de la participation des travailleurs au niveau de l’entreprise et du dialogue social en général. L’accent est mis particulièrement sur les opportunités et les défis que ces initiatives ouvrent pour les syndicats en termes de capacité à influencer les évolutions au niveau européen. La première partie se focalise sur les niveaux sectoriel et intersectoriel (interprofessionnel), en analysant les évolutions du dialogue social. La seconde partie se concentre sur le niveau de l’entreprise, en examinant l’impact des trois principales mesures législatives adoptées depuis le milieu des années 1990 en matière de participation des travailleurs : la directive sur les comités d’entreprise européens ; la directive sur la participation des travailleurs dans les sociétés européennes ; la directive-cadre sur l’information et la consultation au niveau national.

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Benchmarking Working Europe 2011

Is the Europe 2020 strategy leading us, as it promises, towards smart, sustainable and inclusive growth? This is the main question addressed by this publication on the eve of this year’s Spring European Summit. The ETUC and ETUI offer a critical assessment of the strategy and its various components: will it be able to provide a framework for the creation of more and better-quality jobs? Are the policies and indicators set to promote an increase in social cohesion? How can workers better participate in the achievement of these various aims? Benchmarking Working Europe 2011 is structured in eight topical chapters illustrated by a significant number of graphs, and has a completely new layout. Chapter 8 is dealing with the issues of Social Dialogue and Worker Participation

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European Works Councils: a trade union guide to Directive 2009/38/EC (Report 114)

This guide has been developed by the ETUC in order to help trade unionists and practitioners in the area of information and consultation around Europe to play an active role in this process and to make the most of the new provisions in the European Works Council Directive as amended by Directive 2009/38/EC. It is an article-by-article legal commentary, written in an accessible style so that it can be used by everybody with interest in European Works Councils and their functioning. Part I contains general remarks on objectives and principles. Parts II, III and IV contain an article by article analysis of the provisions of the Directive and their consequences. A summary table of the guide can be found in Part V. From September 2010, the guide will also be available in French and German

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European Works Councils in complementary perspectives

During the last 15 years, research on European Works Councils has revealed significant information concerning the structure, dynamics and ability of EWCs to represent employees’ interests. A multitude of factors and conditions influencing the work and results of EWC activity have been identified. Until now, however, there has been little systematic theorising about EWCs and their specific character as ‘interest organisations within profit organisations’ and the specific relationship or ‘organisational fit’ between each entity.

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New website on EWC Training by the ETUI's Education Department

In December 2015 the Education Department of the European Trade Union Institute launches a new online portal devoted to trainign for European Works Council members and SE works council members.

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'The right and duty of European Works Councils to report back to the workforce: broad uptake, little specificity', by Stan De Spiegelaere & Romuald Jagodzinski (ETUI)

This policy brief examines if and how the reformulated obligation in the Recast European Works Council Directive to report back found its way into EWC agreements by looking at survey data, results of large-scale agreement analysis and by providing examples of clauses in which this obligation is reflected.

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EWC Training: 'How to organise your communication networks', by Bruno Demaître (ETUI), Romuald Jagodzinski (ETUI), Sjef Stoop (FNV Formaat)


This second in a series of manuals for European Workers' Representatives explains in an easy-to-read format how European Works Council (EWC) members can organise and manage their communications network. It gives tips and tricks for better information flows and provides examples of best practices in several EWCs. The manual is available in 8 different languages.

 Hard copies can be ordered free of charge: Bruno Demaître

'EWC and SE works councils 2016. Facts and figures' now available also in German, French, Italian and Polish

The ETUI's recent publication 'EWC and SE works councils in 2015. Facts and figures' (which is part of the 'EWC Recast evaluation infopack') has just been translated into German, French Italian and Polish.

All versions are now available digitally for a free download:

Alternatively they can be also downloaded from the ETUI website.

EFFAT's new brochure 'Practical guidelines for EWC Coordinators and trade union officers'

EFFAT – the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions – has recently published a practical guide for EWC coordinators and trade union officers.

The guide is addressed to practitioners and offers a useful overview of topical EWC issues, ranging from the assessment of the EWC Recast Directive to transnational company agreements, psychosocial risks, handling information, precarious work, gender equality, social audits and more. The guide will soon be available in other languages.

An essential must-read for EWC experts.

Should you like to make full use of the hyperlinks in the handbook, please write to the EFFAT Secretariat at the following address: v.infantino@effat.org

For further information on the guide please contact e.somaglia@effat.org and follow EFFAT on Twitter at @EFFAT_Press

Downloaad the Effat EWC brochure 2016

Evaluating the EWC Recast Directive: "Too little, too late" ETUI Report by S. De Spiegelaere

In 2009, the long awaited (since 1999) Recast Directive on European Works Councils (EWCs) was adopted. Its most important goals were to (1) improve the effectiveness of EWCs and (2) increase the amount of EWCs. In 2016, the implementation of the Recast Directive is to be evaluated by the European Commission that prepares its own report on the topic. This report feeds into the evaluation debate by building on data from analysis of 1200+ EWC agreements stored in the EWC Database managed by the ETUI.

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EWC Recast Evaluation Infopack: publications by the ETUI

In the run-up to the official Evaluation Report by the European Commission expected in Autumn 2016 the debate on this topic is in full swing. In the last Expert Meeting organised by the European Commission on 23/06/2016 gathering representatives of national authorities (ministries) responsible for the implementation of the EWC Recast Directive as well as representatives of trade unions (political: ETUC, ETUFs and national unions; research: ETUI) and employers (BusinessEurope) final outcomes of a study completed by consultancy ICFI for the European Commission were presented.

The ETUI has been contributing to the debate with several publications providing robust facts and figures from various angles. We gather them for you in this 'EWC Recast Evaluation Infopack'.

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Managers, BusinessEurope and the development of European Works Councils by J. Waddington, V. Pulignano and J. Turk

Copyright @ R.Jagodzinski 2016

The ETUI has just published a new Working Paper by Jeremy Waddington (ETUI and University of Manchester), Valeria Pulignano and Jeffrey Turk (University of Leuven), Thomas Swerts (University of Antwerp) on a very topical question of assessing the operation of European Works Councils.

The Working Papper's relevance is (at least) twofold:

1) it presents and explains management's views on the effectiveness, usefulness, roles and operation of European Works Councils (research on management's perspective on EWCs is scarce and rare);

2) it represents a timely contribution to the ongoing debate on EWCs preceeding the European Commission's evaluation report on the implementation of the directive (and its possible review/recast/revision) expected in autumn 2016;

The publication can be downloaded freely from:


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The reNEWed European Works Councils database portal is online

In February 2016, to mark the 10th anniversary of the ETUI online portal on European Works Councils www.ewcdb.eu (available since 2006) received a completely new interface and design. The remake of the website was the ETUI’s response to users’ growing needs and a reflection of a change in access policy: we now offer full free access to all registered and many new features.

Important: old logins and passwords (from before 22/02/2016) will NOT work --> please REGISTER ANEW.

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