This volume offers a lawyer’s perspective of cross-border collective action in Europe. The Phenomenon of cross-border collective action is well-known in the transport sector where there is a long standing tradition of organising collective action and boycotts to improve the employment conditions of seafarers. However due to the expanding “Europeanisation” of the economy, industrial disputes with a cross-border impact do and will continue to arise in other sectors of the economy as well. As a result, they will or may become a more common feature in multinational enterprises when they operate in a European and global context. The recent cases of Laval (C-341/05) and Viking (C-438/05) are perfect illustrations of the complex interaction between economic freedoms and the fundamental social right to take collective action. This kind of industrial dispute tends to raise fundamental questions about the position of industrial action within the framework of the EU/EC.
This volume takes a three-pronged approach to the issue. The book starts with several contributions addressing general issues related to the right to take collective action in a transnational context. The second part consists of national reports on labour law aspects of cross-border collective action. The third part includes national reports on private international law issues resulting from the transnational nature of a collective action. Both parts are rounded off with a comparative analysis. The following Member States have been included in this study: Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
At present, the right to take collective action with a cross border impact constitutes a major legal challenge. Firstly the question arises whether divergence between domestic labour law and domestic private international law impedes the effective use of cross-border collective action. Another quintessential issue that arises is whether Community law itself can become an obstacle to the effective use of collective action (Cf. the Viking and Laval cases) or to what extent Community law can constitute a means to resolve the obstacles to cross-border collective action. Is there a need for a ‘kind’ of a European law on collective action?
The Social Europe Series gives the reader more than an introduction to the social systems of the member states of the European Union. It offers the social security expert with comparative experience the opportunity to place his or her knowledge of (aspects of) foreign social security systems in a broader national context. The series facilitates the broad comparison of the national systems, by describing them according to a uniform structure.
Editorial board: Michael Adler (University of Edinburgh), Anne Davies (University of Oxford), Guus Heerma van Voss (University of Leiden), Frank Hendrickx (University of Leuven & Tilburg University), Frans Pennings (Utrecht University), Sophie Robin-Olivier (University of Paris X Nanterre), Achim Seifert (University of Luxembourg ), Sara Stendahl (Göteborg University) and Bernd Waas (Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Frankfurt).
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