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EU Social Agenda          Grace Hudson   University of Bradford
History and Context EC/EU   competencies Subsidiarity and proportionality Legislative decision-making processEuropean s...
Commitment in TreatiesThere has been provision for social policy in the  Treaties from the Treaty of Rome 1957- but origin...
Policies and Initiatives 1960s  – policy focused mainly on labour  mobility 1970s – harsh economic climate     1st Soci...
Policies and InitiativesStructural funds European Social Fund established 1957 European Regional Development Fund 1975 ...
Policies and Initiatives Single   European Act    New “title” on economic and social cohesion    Qualified majority vot...
Policies and InitiativesSEA Social Dialogue – Commission required to develop a   dialogue between employers and employees ...
Policies and InitiativesDelors review of social consequences of single  market programmeFears of “social dumping”Attempt t...
Policy and Initiatives Social   Protocol in Maastricht Treaty  Incorporated social provisions of Social Charter  Propos...
Policy and Initiatives Anomalous     situation of the UK Little legislation adopted under Social  Protocol, eg only two ...
Policy and Initiatives 1990s   - Concerns about unemployment and  competitiveness White paper on the development of soci...
Policy and Initiatives Social       Policy Agenda adopted 2000 as part of Lisbon Strategy for jobs and growth    More an...
Policy and Initiatives   Lisbon Strategy – “modernising the European social    model, investing in people and combating s...
Policy and IntitiatesFollow up from revised Lisbon Strategy:  Communication on the Social Agenda  COM (2005) 53  Key prior...
Policy and InitiativesRenewed social agenda: opportunities, access and solidarity in 21st century Europe COM (2008) 412Con...
Policy and Initiatives – nextTarget of eradicating poverty by 2010  2010 is to be the European Year for  Combating Poverty...
Sources of information   Key policy documents   Legislation   Pending legislation   Guides and background publications...
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EU Social Agenda (2009)

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EU Social Agenda

Grace Hudson University of Bradford - a really useful summary of the history of EU social policy agendas.


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EU Social Agenda (2009)

  1. 1. EU Social Agenda Grace Hudson University of Bradford
  2. 2. History and Context EC/EU competencies Subsidiarity and proportionality Legislative decision-making processEuropean social model v American economic modelStrong commitment to social policy by member states – except Britain under Conservative Government (1979-1997)
  3. 3. Commitment in TreatiesThere has been provision for social policy in the Treaties from the Treaty of Rome 1957- but originally narrow definition: working conditions standard of living equal pay for equal work social security for migrants increased mobility of workers Wider policy in hands of member states
  4. 4. Policies and Initiatives 1960s – policy focused mainly on labour mobility 1970s – harsh economic climate  1st Social action programme 1974  For full employment, better living and working conditions, workers’ participation in decision making, equal treatment of men and women  Establishment of EFIWLC and CEDEFOP Disparities between rich and poor regions
  5. 5. Policies and InitiativesStructural funds European Social Fund established 1957 European Regional Development Fund 1975  Aimed to reduce regional disparities, address aspects of social policy, combat long-term unemployment, promote education and training And later, Cohesion fund 1992
  6. 6. Policies and Initiatives Single European Act  New “title” on economic and social cohesion  Qualified majority voting on health and safety of workers  Opportunity used by Commission to enact range of social policy legislation – but raised a number of legal challenges, eg British government’s objection to “Working time” Directive 1993 (challenge rejected by Court of Justice)
  7. 7. Policies and InitiativesSEA Social Dialogue – Commission required to develop a dialogue between employers and employees Review of and substantial increase in structural funds
  8. 8. Policies and InitiativesDelors review of social consequences of single market programmeFears of “social dumping”Attempt to promote social dimensionCommunity Charter on the Fundamental Social Rights of Workers (Social Charter)– adopted 1989 by 11 member states (not UK)Lack of success/blocking of social policy legislation – unanimous decisions required
  9. 9. Policy and Initiatives Social Protocol in Maastricht Treaty  Incorporated social provisions of Social Charter  Proposed Social chapter opposed by Major  Britain opted out of Social Protocol but terms of Treaty of Rome re social policy (as revised by later treaties) still applied Social issues now core policy – includes issues such as protection of children and young people, freedom of association, public health, help for elderly and disabled (number of programmes)
  10. 10. Policy and Initiatives Anomalous situation of the UK Little legislation adopted under Social Protocol, eg only two directives on European works councils and parental leave – other legal bases used where possible Treaty reform – adoption of Amsterdam Treaty – new Labour government agreed to incorporation of social protocol and to adoption of the two directives
  11. 11. Policy and Initiatives 1990s - Concerns about unemployment and competitiveness White paper on the development of social policy in the period 1995-1999 (1994)  Focus on job creation, labour mobility, equal opportunity, integration of social and economic policies  No major legislative agenda in next social action programme – more focus on discussion
  12. 12. Policy and Initiatives Social Policy Agenda adopted 2000 as part of Lisbon Strategy for jobs and growth  More and better jobs  New balance between flexibility and security in a changing work environment  Combating poverty, social exclusion, and discrimination  Modernising social security protection systems  Promoting equality between men and women  Reinforcing the social dimension of enlargement and external relations
  13. 13. Policy and Initiatives Lisbon Strategy – “modernising the European social model, investing in people and combating social exclusion” Use of Open Method of Co-ordination  National Reform Programmes  Joint Employment Reports  Action Plans  Annual Progress Reports Benchmarking, best practice, target setting, peer pressure
  14. 14. Policy and IntitiatesFollow up from revised Lisbon Strategy: Communication on the Social Agenda COM (2005) 53 Key priorities: employment fighting poverty and promoting equal opportunities Eg older people in workforce – “active ageing”, employment of women, managing restructuring through social dialogue
  15. 15. Policy and InitiativesRenewed social agenda: opportunities, access and solidarity in 21st century Europe COM (2008) 412Concept of “Flexicurity”ESF spend 2007-13 75 billion euros
  16. 16. Policy and Initiatives – nextTarget of eradicating poverty by 2010 2010 is to be the European Year for Combating Poverty and Social ExclusionConsultation on the future “EU 2020” strategy COM (2009) 647
  17. 17. Sources of information Key policy documents Legislation Pending legislation Guides and background publications Statistics Opinion poll surveys Europa website Comment and analysis – books, journals, reports

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