Chapter 1: At the European intersection: the Austrian way to equality, diversity and inclusion
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In Austria, we find the paradox of slow advancement in workplace equality, diversity and inclusion, despite elaborate legal policy. Using the case of a legal change aimed at increasing pay equality requiring employers to state the minimum wage in job advertisements, we provide an explanation for this paradox. Analyzing relevant documents from legislation and implementation, we found that although social partners and equality experts were central in legislation, later, implementation was taken over by HRM practitioners who re-interpreted the regulation from a strategic HRM perspective subtly changing its framing. Focusing on attracting suitable employees and reducing costs, HRM practitioners argued for stating realistic pay, increasing transparency beyond what is legally required but not for equality reasons as they also implemented HRM practices associated with increasing pay inequality. The Austrian case sheds light on which equality policies are introduced, how multiple actors shape their implementation and, ultimately, how effective they are.