Extending flexicurity

The potential of short-time working schemes

Mandl I, Storrie D, Hurley J, Mascherini M, Broughton A, Owczarzak R, Riso S, Salvatore L | ERM Report 2010 | European Monitoring Centre on Change | Oct 2010

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In the face of recession, falling demand and the consequent slowing of production, short-time working and temporary layoff schemes have been extended (or introduced) in many Member States.

These schemes, often with the aid of public funds, reduce working time, while protecting workers’ incomes and company solvency; frequently, the time spent not working is used for training instead.

This report examines the practice of reduced working time across Europe, and looks in detail at how it is implemented in ten Member States, with a view to determining the contribution that such schemes can make in implementing the common principles of flexicurity, especially in light of the broad-based consensus they enjoy among the social partners.