EWC Academy - Academy for European Works Councils and SE Works Councils

Draft for new EWC Directive

The bill has been available since 24 January 2024  → more

Basic and advanced seminar for European and SE Works Councils

Montabaur Castle, 2 - 5 April 2024 → Agenda

First legal decision in Ireland calls into question the operability of the EWC

Explanation in the Irish journal "Industrial Relations News"  → Download this article of 27 April 2023

In-house Seminars

Training for members of EWC or Select Committee → more

Works councils are increasingly confronted with cross-border corporate organizations. The EWC Academy in Hamburg (Germany) is a specialized, employee-oriented consultancy and training firm in this area.

Our website is available since January 2001 and presents services for:

  • Workplace representatives in Germany and other countries
  • European Works Councils and SE Works Councils
  • Special Negotiating Bodies
  • Employee representatives in Supervisory Boards and Workers' Directors


Our offer includes:

  • Open seminars for individuals registering directly with us
  • In-house seminars for individual companies or works councils
  • Legal, economic and intercultural consulting
  • Strategies for the structuring of consultation procedures
  • Legal opinions on EWC and SE disputes
  • Collaboration in relevant research projects, e.g. for the European Commission


The EWC Academy (and its forerunner organization) has so far trained and/or advised employee representatives from 313 companies which represents around 25 % of all currently existing transnational works councils in Europe.




Up-to-date News
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    Breakdown in negotiations on teleworking

    After 15 working sessions and over one year of intensive exchange with logistical support from the European Commission, the negotiations between the European social partners on a framework agreement on teleworking and the right to disconnect broke down on 9 November 2023...

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    Agreement on artificial intelligence (AI) regulation

    On 9 December 2023, an agreement was reached in the trilogue on the content of the new EU regulation on artificial intelligence. The trilogue is a tripartite meeting between the three legislative institutions of the EU, a sort of "conciliation committee": the European Commission, the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament...

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    Supply Chain Directive clears important hurdle

    On 14 December 2023, the three EU legislative institutions agreed on the content of the Due Diligence Directive. In future, companies with 500 employees or more and a global annual turnover of €150 million or more can be held liable for violations of human rights and environmental standards in their supply chain...

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    US electric car manufacturer refuses collective bargaining agreements

    Since 27 October 2023, more and more Tesla garages in Sweden have been out on strike. The IF Metall trade union initially called a strike for Tesla workers in twelve garages, but 100 garages are now already affected. Since 7 November 2023, there have been extensive solidarity actions by...

     

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    No statutory minimum wage in Italy

    On 6 December 2023, an initiative by the centre-left opposition to introduce a minimum wage of €9 failed in parliament. This would have benefited one in every four employees. Like Austria and Sweden, Italy is one of the few countries that is not obliged to introduce a statutory minimum wage because collective bargaining coverage is above 80%...

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    Change of government in Poland

    Since 13 December 2023, a pro-European centre-left government is in place in Poland under Prime Minister Donald Tusk (photo), who previously held this office from 2007 to 2014. His liberal-conservative policies at the time provoked protests due to social cuts - one of the reasons for the electoral success of the national-conservative PiS party...

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    Strengthening European works councils in Austria

    On 29 August 2023, the Austrian Supreme Court of Justice in labour and social matters dismissed an appeal by the central management of Mayr-Melnhof Packaging against the ruling of the Vienna Higher Regional Court of February 2023. This decision was communicated to the parties on 18 October 2023...

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    Courts in Spain must decide on Brexit issue

    On 18 September 2023, the Social Chamber of Spain's highest labour court ("Audiencia Nacional de España") ruled on a lawsuit filed by the European works council of the International Airlines Group (IAG), a holding company of airlines including British Airways, Iberia and Aer Lingus...

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    European Court of Justice tightens the General Data Protection Regulation

    A ruling by the European Court of Justice on 5 December 2023 will make it easier for data protection authorities to punish violations of the General Data Protection Regulation and impose higher fines on average. Two courts (in Lithuania and Germany)...

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    SE works council strengthens local employee representation

    On 25 October 2023, a charter to improve social dialogue was signed at the headquarters of the care group Clariane in Paris. It applies to all seven European countries (including the United Kingdom) and sets out a number of principles. The contracting partners of central management are...

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    Diversity, equity and inclusion at Italian insurance group

    At a meeting in Athens on 14 November 2023, the select committee of Generali's EWC signed a joint declaration with central management. It consists of 13 points that are to be promoted in all European branches. Diversity is seen as a source of enrichment, innovation and creativity. Diversity includes...

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    French insurance company wants to improve support for older employees

    On 16 November 2023, Axa's EWC signed a charter with central management in Paris to promote the role and position of employees over 50. The charter is based on the principles of the "Club Landoy", an association of companies that have developed guidelines for the inclusion...

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    Swiss pharmaceutics manufacturer establishes EWC under German law

    On 25 September 2023, an EWC agreement was signed for Siegfried Holding, based in Zofingen (Canton of Aargau). The pharmaceutics group has 3,600 employees worldwide. The ten members of the "Siegfried Euroforum" from Germany, France, Spain and Malta (plus two guests from Switzerland) meet twice a year, including...

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    Australian healthcare group establishes EWC under French law

    On 5 October 2023, an EWC agreement was signed in Paris for Ramsay Santé, the European subsidiary of Sydney-based Ramsay Health Care. It applies to 36,000 employees in France, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Italy. On 1 January 2024, Ramsay Santé's EWC will replace Capio's EWC, which was established in 2006...

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    EWC negotiations fail once again in a US company

    On 16 November 2023, Kohler's special negotiating body unanimously declared the breakdown of negotiations to establish a European works council. The reason was the negative attitude of management. A European works council will therefore be established in accordance with the subsidiary requirements in France, the country with the largest workforce in the EU.

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    Chinese agrochemical group relocates EWC to the Netherlands after Brexit

    On 14 June 2023, the period of old "voluntary" agreements came to an end with the signing of a new EWC agreement for Syngenta. Syngenta is one of the largest suppliers of seeds and crop protection products and was acquired by the Chinese state-owned chemical group Sinochem in 2017. However, the company is still headquartered in Basel (Switzerland)...

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    Better equipment for EWC of French aircraft supplier 

    A new EWC agreement for Safran was concluded in Paris on 5 September 2023. The technology group supplies engines and electronics for the aviation industry. As before, the EWC will be chaired by the Group's CEO. The 21 EWC members from eight countries (including the UK) elect the secretary, treasurer and...

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    Luxembourg packaging group with EWC agreement under Irish law

    On 29 November 2023, an updated EWC agreement was signed for the Ardagh Group. The manufacturer of glass and metal packaging for the food and beverage industry has Irish roots but is now based in Luxembourg. The EWC was founded in 2005, represents 9,500 employees and continues to operate under Irish law...

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    Escape from co-determination in a single day of negotiations

    Since 28 June 2023, the family-owned company Stockmeier from Bielefeld has been operating as a European Company (SE). It is engaged in the production and distribution of speciality chemicals and has grown to over 2,000 employees through acquisitions in recent years. As in many similar cases...

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    East German bioenergy producer establishes SE works council

    Verbio was entered in the commercial register as a European Company (SE) on 30 November 2023. Based in Zörbig (Saxony-Anhalt), the company employs 1,000 people and produces fuels and energy for industry, transport and agriculture, including straw for biogas production. In addition to the administration in Leipzig and production sites in the Bitterfeld region...

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    Expert opinion on curbing the exodus from co-determination

    The legal form of the European Company (SE) is increasingly being misused to limit or completely avoid employee participation on the supervisory board. For this reason, 85% of all SE conversions throughout Europe are concentrated in one single country: Germany. The legal form is particularly attractive for family businesses and start-ups...

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    French environmental group introduces basic social security benefits

    On 11 September 2023, Veolia's Group management announced the introduction of the "Veolia Cares" program. In future, all 213,000 employees worldwide will be entitled to at least ten weeks' parental leave, sickness and death benefit insurance (six months' pay in the event of death), support for caring for relatives and...

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    French cooperative bank extends global framework agreement

    On 9 October 2023, Crédit Agricole's central management signed a new framework agreement with the Global Federation of Services Unions (UNI) at the bank's headquarters in the Paris suburb of Montrouge. It covers 75,000 employees in 46 countries and builds on a framework agreement signed in July 2019...

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    Taking stock of the implementation of global agreement

    After one year, the parties to the framework agreement for Teleperformance can look back on a successful collaboration. On 1 December 2022, the central management of the French group concluded a global framework agreement with the Federation of Services Unions (UNI) for the first time. It applies to almost 500,000 employees in 95 countries and is implemented locally through national agreements...

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    Industrial policy challenges in eleven Central and Eastern European countries

    The regional project “European Economies of the East”, run by the German Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Budapest, published in May 2023 a toolkit for the future design of industrial policy in Central and Eastern Europe. In the last twenty years, the countries have developed into important pillars of the European economy...

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    European Works Council for Saarstahl in the planning stage

    Preliminary talks on the establishment of an EWC were held in Völklingen and Dillingen (Germany) on 31 July 2023. Two plants in Lorraine and northern France have belonged to Saarstahl since 2021, and another site in the Franche-Comté region has been part of the group for some time...

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    Fair hotels for responsible travellers

    The International Union of Food and Hotel Workers (IUF) in Geneva runs its own website listing hotels that treat their employees fairly. Workplaces are free from discrimination and harassment, guarantee decent working conditions, a living wage and the right to establish and join unions. There are hotel listings for Croatia...

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    Regulation on video conferencing for Swiss insurance company

    On 12 September 2023, the steering committee of the Zurich European Forum (ZEF), which is the name of their European works council, discussed a permanent regulation on video conferencing. In a workshop organized by the EWC Academy, EWC members had formulated their wishes during...

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    Luxembourg real estate company commits to global social standards

    On 18 July 2023, AccorInvest signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Luxembourg with the International Union of Food and Hotel Workers’ Unions (IUF) in Geneva on global workers’ rights. The real estate division of the French Accor hotel group has 25,000 employees in 758 hotels in 26 countries and...

 

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