European Works Councils and European Company (SE) Works Councils
European Works Councils and SE Works Councils
Board-level Employee Representation
Board-level Employee Representation
Corporate Governance, Company Law and Worker Participation
Corporate Governance and Company Law
Legislation and regulation
Legislation and regulation
Sustainability and Worker Participation
Sustainability and Worker Participation
European Social Dialogue
European Social Dialogue
Databases and other Main Resources
Databases and other Main Resources
About this site

The website has operated since 2007. It has evolved in line with developments in the world of work and EU regulation, and their implications for worker participation and democracy. In 2023, the site’s ‘fitness-for-purpose’ was evaluated via a comprehensive consultation process with internal and external contributors and users. The ‘new look’ website is the result of these interactions and reflects its aim to be the premier site for information, data and commentary on worker participation, information, and consultation across the EU

The website draws primarily on the work of the ETUI’s ‘Europeanisation of Industrial Relations’ Unit 1 researchers and expert networks run by Unit staff. The website also provides you with information on the EU-27 industrial relations backgrounds, which differ significantly from one Member State to another.

Where relevant, the website also provides information on and links to external sources and ETUI collaborators.

Who is this site for?

The website is designed as a European information platform. It can assist national and European practitioners of worker participation, their trade unions and experts but is also a key resource for political and policy institutions, academia, and the wider public.

What’s on this site?

The website is designed to provide users with access to what is happening at the national and EU level in the field of employees’ rights to information, consultation, and board-level representation, as well as insights into relevant developments on workplace instruments for workers within national industrial relations systems. In each main section, you will find brief commentaries on or links to:

  • definitions and descriptions of relevant forms of worker participation (e.g. European Works Councils, Board-level Employee Representation);
  • relevant EU regulation and national law and their revision;
  • special or specific topics about workplace participation instruments;
  • key networks;
  • publications (e.g. reports, legal cases, analyses, commentaries);
  • resources, including our databases;
  • key graphics about EU workplace participation instruments; and
  • historical overviews.

The website also provides you with unique information on the industrial relations backgrounds in each of the EU-27 Member States. Our Country Comparator tool on the National Industrial Relations page enables a quick comparison of countries and their worker participation topics.

Transnationalisation of worker participation in the EU

Since the beginning of the European integration process, there has been a clear commitment to provide employees in Europe with the right to be involved in company decision-making. From the 1970s, this has led to the adoption of various European directives which supplement and enhance national worker participation rights.

With recognition of workers’ rights to information and consultation as EU fundamental rights (e.g. via the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), and adoption of the European Works Council (EWC) Directives (94/45/EC and the Recast 2009/38/EC), the European Company (SE) Directive (2001/86/EC), the Framework Directive (2002/14/EC) on information and consultation, and other legal instruments (including for workplace health and safety), the relevance of European legislation has significantly increased. With the ongoing development of these instruments, the website provides a ‘living’ tool for workers, unions, and other stakeholders to use in addressing matters around worker participation and democracy at the EU level.