|Author (Corporate)||European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions|
|Content Type||Key Source, Report, Website|
The demographic challenge of an ageing population and the increasing diversity of working life have led to an increased focus on the concept of sustainable work over the life course. This emphasises the relevance of the quality of a worker’s job and their working environment over the entire course of their working life.
Working longer implies working better by ensuring work organisation and working arrangements that suit individual needs; training and skills development; maintaining health, safety and well-being at the workplace; providing adequate earnings and prospects; and paying attention to working time and work–life balance.
The European Commission’s Europe 2020 strategy strives for ‘smart, sustainable and inclusive growth’ and this implies a focus on job quality and working conditions. This is highlighted in the Commission’s 2010 ‘Agenda for new skills and jobs’.
Current European policy concerns include work–life balance (in particular for working parents), fighting undeclared and fraudulent work, extending working life, ensuring a proper balance between flexibility and security, investing in human capital, and tackling the significant inequalities that people face in the labour market.
It has placed a particular focus on the conditions that older workers are facing and how they are linked to the ability and willingness to work up to retirement age. The links between work and health are investigated in close consultation with the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work, EU-OSHA with a joint report on psychosocial risks in European workplaces. Eurofound has also looked more specifically at physical and psychological violence at work.
The analysis of the most recent data from the sixth EWCS conducted in 2015 will shed more light on the link between job quality and the sustainability of work. The question of whether employment status is linked to particular working conditions and well-being outcomes will be investigated and there will be a particular focus on gender equality at the workplace and on the analysis of employee engagement and development of workers’ knowledge and skills.
Eurofound will also focus on changing employment relations, looking into the incidence of non-standard work forms, such as casual work, in an effort to inform policymakers about available data on the extent of their use, the characteristics of people engaged in them, their working conditions, social protection and employment rights.
Using EWCS data, Eurofound has developed indices for measuring different dimensions of job quality in order to assess job quality across Europe. Other research examined policies that enable people to participate in the labour market until an older age and specifically how to extend working life through flexible retirement schemes.
+ Sixth European Working Conditions Survey
|Subject Categories||Employment and Social Affairs|
|Countries / Regions||Europe|