Theme 2: The future of the European Social Model

The labour migration flows at the common market are one of the most crucial challenges the European Social Model is dealing with. The recent ‘yellow card procedure’ endorsed by the governments from Central and Eastern Europe (supported by Denmark) to the Commission’s initiative ‘equal pay for equal work at the same place of work’ proved that the NMS continue their strategy based on the low-cost competitiveness. On the other hand, lack of agreement on European minimum wage has showed that the national trade union confederations, taking also into account diversities in the IR models in Europe, do not share the same vision to what extent the EU should be integrated in the social dimension. Some unions tend to continue the collective bargaining coordination while some have nothing against giving more power to the hands of the EU institutions. Moreover, in comparison to the 1990s, the results of the European Social Dialogue are far from expectations. What direction the EU will go? Are we going to see Europe’s convergence in the socio-economic area (wages, social benefits, taxation, etc.) or the national diversities will persist? What is the future of the European Social Dialogue? What does it mean to Industrial Relations at the European level and to the European Social Model?