This part of the website, which covers national industrial relations, looks at the way that employers and workers, and their representatives, interact with one another within a single country.

National industrial relations play a crucial role in determining many aspects of employment within each country, from workers’ pay and hours, through the way their health and safety at work is protected, to their ability to influence an employer’s decisions on future investment or technology. However, they also directly influence the relations between employers and worker representatives at European level. The worker representatives on European Works Councils (EWCs) are overwhelmingly drawn from national employee representative structures and it is national unions that send representatives to European-level sectoral social dialogue committees.

This national industrial relations section covers relations between employers’ organisations and individual employers, on one side, and unions and other employee representative bodies, such as works councils, on the other. It also looks at several levels, ranging from the individual workplace to the whole economy. It sets out key aspects of the legal framework in which these interactions occur but also provides up-to-date information on the actual situation rather than simply to set out the law. The section provides details on the 27 EU Member States plus, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.