EPSU TRAINING PROJECT: Collective bargaining in the digital age

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Ensuring that public service workers share the benefits of digitalisation

New technologies have a big impact on almost every aspect of employment, including significant changes to job requirements, increasing an employer’s capacity to monitor and control workloads. It can lead to greater capacity for practices such as home working or create pressures that intrude deeper into a worker’s personal life. Through collective bargaining, trade unions in public services can engage to ensure that workers share in the benefits of new technology and that their interests are protected.

For this reason, EPSU has developed this training project to help affiliates develop their collective bargaining policies to better address these challenges. The training will aim to provide participants with a better understanding of the exact nature of such challenges and their implications for the future of collective bargaining as a tool for regulating the new world of work.

There will be five regional training seminars allowing address worker representatives to discuss and exchange information on how to develop practical strategies for collective bargaining to dal with the key issues, including:

  • information and consultation rights;
  • training;
  • gender equality;
  • data protection and control;
  • surveillance and geo-tracking;
  • work organisation;
  • right to (dis)connect;
  • health and safety; and
  • work-life balance and working time

The training modules will help participants to:

  • understand the impact of digital technologies on jobs, working conditions and workers’ rights and how cross-sector and sector collective bargaining have developed to address these;
  • analyse and compare models and solutions to deal with the introduction of new technologies through collective bargaining;
  • formulate concrete solutions and practical strategies to overcome the problems and make the best of the opportunities arising from digitalisation.

The regional seminars will each involve up to 40 participants.

The training seminars will be open to EPSU affiliates and in particular:

  • trade union delegates involved in collective bargaining at different levels
  • representatives from EPSU affiliates’ collective bargaining departments
  • representatives from European work councils

EPSU is developing the training modules in partnership with Ecorys and wmp, organisations with considerable experience in providing training to trade unions and European works council members.  They will be drawing up the training programme in consultation with EPSU over the next few months. Over the course of the project they will also develop a training guide that will be made available to all affiliates.

Following the five seminars a final conference is planned for December 2020 which will provide an opportunity to review the project, discuss the draft training guide and plan follow up action.

Do you have an interesting practice/model ? let us know!

Do you have an interesting collective bargaining practice/agreement/campaign to shape the introduction of new digital technology through collective bargaining? Let us know! Trainers will use all the innovative practices gathered to prepare and develop the training modules! You can send them to [email protected]

Where and when

Regional seminars


Languages - interpretation

Bucharest 24-25 September 2019

Albania, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkey

English, Albanian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Russian, Turkish

Lisbon 19-20 November 2019

Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Spain, UK

English, Greek, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish

Ljubljana 21-22 January 2020

Austria, Bosnia & Hercegovina,  Croatia, Germany, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Slovenia, Switzerland

English, German, Macedonian, BHSM, Slovenian

Stockholm 17-18 March 2020

Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Iceland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden

Danish, English, Finnish, French, Swedish

Warsaw 19-20 May 2020

Armenia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Ukraine

English, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Russian

EPSU expects affiliated unions to cover the travel and accommodation expenses of their participants. Funding from the European Commission will allow us to cover the travel and accommodation costs of some delegates. Full details will be provided when the formal invitations are sent out for each meeting.

For further information, contact: Luca Scarpiello ([email protected])

These meetings are part of a project funded by the European Commission.

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