A Strong Social Dialogue for Sustainable Development in Europe

Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Gilbert Scott Building - Room 253 (University of Glasgow)
Barbara Bechter , Management, Durham University Business School
The paper examines European Sectoral Social Dialogue (ESSD) and potential barriers to effective engagement in social dialogue. The overall aim of the research is to establish the structural capacity of national sectoral industrial relations systems and social partners engaging in ESSD and to identify procedures and processes used by social partners to engage in social policy making at the European level. The study combines quantitative and qualitative methods to research these objectives. The quantitative part aims to identify and map the settings for effective ESSD, while the qualitative part investigates social partners’ understanding and interest in ESSD and the engagement procedures and processes employed within and between social partners at the European and the national sectoral level. To account for differences in the capacity and engagement of social partners the study compares 2 sectors and 5 countries, selected to maximize variation in industrial relations regimes. Many obstacles exist, making it hard to accomplish a coordinated strategy in relation to social dialogues. The aim of this paper therefore is to identify the range of barriers that prevent national social partners in engaging more comprehensively in ESSD.