Industrial Relations in the New Europe

Industrial Relations in the New Europe

Enlargement, Integration and Reform

Edited by Peter Leisink, Bram Stejin and Ulke Veersma

This book presents an evidence-based assessment of the impact of EU enlargement on industrial relations and social standards in old and new EU Member States. It combines chapters which give an overview of the process of enlargement/integration and comparative socio-economic data at EU and national level, with chapters that present an in-depth analysis of the impact of European integration on national industrial relations. These in-depth analyses cover both a number of old EU Member States in Western Europe and new Member States in Central and Eastern Europe. The book combines supranational European, Western and Eastern perspectives on the impact of European integration.

Chapter 13: Concluding Analysis

Peter Leisink, Bram Steijn and Ulke Veersma

Subjects: business and management, human resource management, social policy and sociology, labour policy


Peter Leisink, Bram Steijn and Ulke Veersma INTRODUCTION The central question driving this book was formulated as: ‘how does the process of European integration impact on industrial relations at the various levels, and who are the main actors in this process?’ Following the answers provided by the individual chapters, we now aim to examine this question by putting it into the broader picture of an enlarged Europe that is experiencing severe pressure from globalization. We will have a closer look at the various national systems that exist under the umbrella of Europe, and the European Social Model that is part of it. We will first attempt to formulate an answer to the central question by examining three of the possible expectations with regard to Europeanization and national industrial relations, and then evaluate these by factoring in the actors involved. Indeed, as Knill and Lehmkuhl (2002) note, the diversity of the localized responses to the Europeanization process can only be understood by taking account of the active involvement of national actors with their respective interests and the resources they can mobilize. Following an analysis of the impact of Europeanization on national industrial relations practices, we will turn specifically to public-sector industrial relations and the way in which these are changing under the sway of the public management reform ideas currently seen in Europe. Finally, the chapter will shed some light on the future of European industrial relations and the possible development of a social Europe involving an even broader spectrum...

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