Let us particiapte! – European Works Councils in cross-border restructuring
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Instytut Spraw Publicznych

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Social policy

Let us particiapte! – European Works Councils in cross-border restructuring


In international restructuring processes - such as conversions, mergers and divisions etc. - the voice of workers is playing an increasingly important role through the action of European Works Councils, which are creating a European level of collective labour relations.


Directive 2019/2121 on cross-border conversions, mergers and divisions guarantees the workers’ rights to information and consultation in these processes if the corporation has a European Works Council. The directive also mandates the establishment of a board-level employee representation mechanism in the newly formed company, if at least one of the converting companies has such a mechanism. These regulations are to be transposed into national legislation before 31 January 2023. 
Past practices have already shown that the voice of workers can be crucial to restructuring in multinational corporations operating within the European Union. Thus the principles of the European Social Model are being in place. The lack of employee consent expressed by the EWC has in the past led to a change in the terms of restructuring or even to its abandonment.

On 13-14 October, a workshop was held, during which partners from Denmark, Spain, Macedonia, Poland, Romania and Italy presented the results of national research on the role of European works councils in international restructuring processes and discussed the possibilities of strengthening the workers’ voice in information and consultation in transnational corporations. The expert meeting was moderated by Dominik Owczarek, while the national study in Poland was conducted by Danuta Pławecka. The Institute of Public Affairs is the main coordinator of research activities in the project.  

More about the project

Project webpage

Funding: DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, European Commission

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