Fit for the new World of Work

Restructurings of a never-seen-before scale hit the European industry due to the combined effects of the COVID-19 crisis-related economic shock, the twin green and digital transitions, ill-regulated globalisation, Brexit and ageing societies. Millions of industry jobs are at risk of being displaced, if not simply removed. At the same time, the EU sets ambitious 2030 targets: at least 55% carbon emission reduction, 78% of the 20-64 years-old in employment, 60% of adults participating in training every year, at least 15 million less people at risk of poverty or social exclusion.

Past industriAll Europe’s projects (“Link them up!” VS/2017/0401, “Anticipate & Shape” VS/2020/0050) demonstrated that the EU legal framework on early workers’ involvement in corporate strategic decisions remains ill-suited, while multinational companies [hereafter MNCs] continue to lack forward-planning on adaptation to drastic changes. Until the EU comes up with binding obligations for MNCs to take a proactive approach to (post-COVID-19) restructuring, social dialogue must go the extra miles to avoid massive forced-redundancies and plant closures and ensure no worker is left behind.

The “Fit for the new world of work” project thus intends to: 1/ incentivise worker representatives in MNCs to engage dialogue with management on topics thus far overlooked in transnational representation bodies (e.g. climate change, supply chains, skills and training policies), and 2/ raise awareness about available European level instruments to support workers in the European industry’s transition (e.g. financial instruments such – revamped European Globalisation Adjustment Fund -, new legislation - Directive on insolvency and preventive restructuring -, social partners’ instruments – European Framework Agreements and outcomes of sectoral social dialogue committees). A series of company-based meetings and a conference will help exchange concrete social dialogue practices from which recommendations for action will be derived and shared with representatives in the +600 MNCs under industriAll Europe’s scope.

Start date: 1 July 2022
Duration: 24 months