The final conference attended by the project team was the International Industrial Relations Association (ILERA European Congress 2019) hosted at Heinrich Heine Universität Düsseldorf. The theme of the conference was “Perspectives of Employment Relations in Europe”, with Aarron Toal and Bernd Brandl delivering the final presentation, building upon what was presented previously in Bielefeld and Manchester.
Just one of the many preliminary findings presented was on the levels on influence employer organisations have on operational aspects (i.e. how the confederation is managed) of any European employer confederation and vice-versa. As similar to the IREC conference, the findings were presented to show the direction of influence between national employer organisations and European confederations.
We were able to observe that apart from German organisations who seem to have a strong influence, the majority of employer organisations observed have a moderate influence on operational aspects of EU confederations, but the direction of influence from EU confederations to the national level is very weak, allowing us to preliminary conclude that EU employers confederations are not influencing national policy in terms of operations aspects. These findings were more or less similar when it came to trade union influence on operational aspects at the EU level and vice versa, where we again observed lower influence on operational aspects than strategic decision making, where overall influence in both directions is lower.
It was a great pleasure to bring the ENTIRE View conference season road trip to an end in Düsseldorf, and we look forward to building upon the preliminary findings presented at all three conferences over the coming months.