Evolution, Effects, Winners and Losers
Chapter 6: Conclusions and Discussion
This chapter summarizes the main ﬁndings and discusses how the research presented in this book should be assessed in its entirety and the relevance of the results for policymaking. Employment protection legislation is one of the most controversial institutions on the labour market. There is an intense and ongoing debate among politicians and representatives of unions and employer organizations regarding the positive and negative effects of the legislation. The purpose of this book has been to present an overview of the vast and rapidly growing economic research on the subject. The ﬁrst vital issue is how to rank countries according to their stringency of employment protection legislation. This is not an easy task. Although many aspects of the legislation are relatively easy to quantify, others are basically qualitative. Among the latter is perhaps the most central and complex component in employment protection legislation, namely how just cause for dismissal is deﬁned. Lack of work and personal reasons, such as gross misconduct or lack of competence, constitute grounds for dismissal in most countries. However 123 PSkedinger_06_Finals.indd 123 1/27/2010 4:00:43 PM 124 Employment protection legislation some legislations also require approval of relevant authorities for dismissals due to lack of work and stipulate severance payments to laidoff workers. A second factor that complicates rankings is the fact that employment protection legislation may be implemented differently across countries. For example, in some countries it may be possible to depart from the legislation in collective agreements. Comparisons of the stringency...
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