Why Aren’t There More European Works Councils? A Belgian Perspective

5 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2019

Date Written: October 4, 2019


This policy brief considers the lack of European Works Councils through a Belgian perspective. It discusses Belgian companies who are currently engaged in establishing one or have developed ‘functionally equivalent’ structures. The remaining companies are confronted with serious obstacles to establishing a European Works Council, principally: (i) a lack of knowledge about them, (ii) weak and time-consuming national-level information and consultation processes, and (iii) a low perceived added value of transnational information and consultation. It evaluates what needs to be done in order to increase the number of EWCs and what trade unions need to do in order to raise awareness on the importance of EWCs at European level.

Keywords: European works council; workers participation; trade union; multinational enterprise; workers representation; Belgium

Suggested Citation

Olijslagers, Charlotte and De Spiegelaere, Stan, Why Aren’t There More European Works Councils? A Belgian Perspective (October 4, 2019). ETUI Research Paper - Policy Brief 7/2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3464194 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3464194

Charlotte Olijslagers

CEFORA ( email )


Stan De Spiegelaere (Contact Author)

European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) ( email )

B-1210 Brussels

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