Towards a European Labour Identity
The Case of the European Works Council
Edited by Michael Whittall, Herman Knudsen, Fred Huijgen
Routledge – 2007 – 236 pages
Since 1996 a growing number of European employees have access to a European works council (EWC), a transnational employee body designed to complement national forms of labour representation . This volume brings together a hep hive of contributors who present valuable new insights into how employee representatives from different European countries perform their jobs as members of European Works Councils in an attempt to develop some sense of a common European labour identity
The transnational character of the EWC makes it an ideal microscopic structure through which the wider discourse surrounding identity – especially when associated with globalization, Europeanization, and mobility – can occur. ‘Towards a European Labour Identity’ examines not only the workings of the EWCs, utilising individual case studies, but also analyses and asses the link with the broader discussions on European identity as well as European trade union co-ordination and solidarity.
Introduction: Process and Structure of the Book 1. European Works Councils and the Problem of Identity 2. The European Works Councils Directive: Changing Rationales for EU Regulation of Employee Participation 3. Living Apart Together?: A Chorus of Multiple Identities 4. Beyond European Works Council Networks: The Break-Up of the Rover Group 5 Co-Ordinating across Borders: The Role of European Industry Federations within European Works Councils 6. Regional Clusters of Communication: Between National and European Identities 7 Ethno-, Poly- and Eurocentric European Works Councils: How does German Involvement Influence their Identity? 8. Still Learning from Europe: Spanish Participation in European Works Councils 9. Interest Representation and European Identity: A Twofold Challenge for European Works Councils 10. The European Works Council and the Feeling of Interdependence 11. Preparing the Ground for a Social Europe?: European Works Councils and European Regulatory Identity 12. Coming of Age: The Development of a Collective Identity in European Works Councils 13. Tackling the Identity Dilemma
Michael Whittall is an associate professor at the Technical University in Munich and a European Union level correspondent for the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. Herman Knudsen is an associate professor in labour relations at Aalborg University, Denmark. Fred Huijgen is a professor in business administration at the Nijmegen Business School, University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands.