Title ”Transfer of training material for European Works Councils (EWC) into the further education concept of lecturers of trade union education institutions in Europe (TEAM.EWC)“ (Training, Education, Advice, Management for EWCs).
Project Number DE/11/LLP-LdV/TOI/147423
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
European Works Councils (EWCs) are employee representation bodies in transnational groups which are responsible for information and consultation by the European corporate management. The employees of a group appoint delegates in their countries who jointly constitute the EWC.
The members of an EWC are facing various expectations from the employees, the management, the national and European trade unions. However, the members of the EWC have to write their work programme themselves. That is difficult because they do not think as "Europeans" from the beginning but rather in a national context. Co-operation in an EWC is exceptionally difficult. Obstacles include language problems, cultural, political and social differences.
This project has dealt with the development and transfer of methods and materials that can be used to make an EWC an intercultural team with the ability to handle the social dialogue effectively and efficiently.
Currently there are approx. 1,000 European Works Councils (EWCs) with about 15,000 to 20,000 members. Their task is to inform the employees and to work in consultation processes in case of company decisions with transnational effects.
The members of EWCs need certain competencies to effectively and efficiently perform their tasks. This includes, e. g., the establishment of efficient communication within an EWC as well as between it and the corporate management. One of the major difficulties is the decentralized election of the employee representatives. They have different interests, experience and competence levels.
At many training events for European Works Council members the participants have frequently stressed that there is a need for a qualification concept which includes legal and intercultural competence.
Within the scope of the LIFT.COM project (2001-2004) an approach was elaborated to form intercultural teams from European Works Councils.
The "Intercultural competence" module of the LIFT.COM concept has now been supplemented by the module "Legal and organizational framework for EWC work", which was elaborated in 2010 within the scope of the EU-funded project of IG BCE (budget line 04.03.03.03). The contents of both updated modules are integrated into the new "TEAM.EWC" qualification concept in a transfer process.
The objective of the innovation transfer is to familiarize teachers, trainers and coaches, especially at the social partners' education institutions, with the qualification concept TEAM.EWC. The project results are intended to improve the systematic qualification of EWC members. This is based on an agreement between the social partners of the German chemical industry from October 2010. The aim has been, and will be, to spread the project to other European countries and to obtain certification by the social partners.
The project consortium therefore included a European trade union association based in Brussels (industriAll-Europe, BE), trade unions from AT, DE and RO, an employers' association as well as a social partner institution from DE. The evaluation was performed under the leadership of a partner (DE) with additional competence in the fields of quality management and quality assurance.
The intention is to improve, support and further develop the competencies of employee representatives throughout Europe together with the social partners.
The vision of this project has been to strengthen the knowledge of EWC members with regard to the legal and organizational framework conditions and to accelerate team building processes in these bodies characterized by intercultural diversity and decentralized election. The aim is to enable the employee representatives working in EWCs to handle the dialogue with the European management of transnational groups in a qualified and competent manner. It is about ensuring and updating effective employee participation at a European level. For that purpose the training concept "LIFT.COM" was developed into the optimized and improved concept TEAM.EWC and communicated to the target group. The core content of the modular programme is intercultural competence, team building, work planning, communication and decision-making in European Works Councils.
The innovation transfer project also aims at ensuring that the TEAM.EWC concept is spread in Europe and becomes a standard for EWC competence development as TEAM.EWC.
The key work steps were:
1. The materials of the predecessor project LIFT.COM have been transferred and converted into a further education concept for lecturers.
2. New training materials related to the revised EWC directive 2009/38/EC have been developed.
3. The newly compiled TEAM.EWC materials have been tried out in test seminars.
4. Within the scope of the project a network of teachers, trainers and coaches will be established for EWCs. Certain multipliers have been be trained for the future work with EWC bodies in the development and test seminars. An interactive website is available that can be used for the exchange of experience in the further implementation of the programme in Germany and Europe.
Utilization and distribution of results
Recognition, transparency, certification
Administrative and Support Service Activities
Electricity, Gas, Steam and Air Conditioning Supply
Mining and Quarrying
transparency and certification
program or curricula
1. Concept for public relations work: Regular public relations work, not only after, but also during the project, shall contribute to communicating the intermediate results and envisaged results of the project to the target groups. In the framework of the project the newly created interactive website could not yet contribute any major content to the trainer network, but in the future it will provide valuable assistance for implementing the concept. Further material will be put up on the website, and the application of the concept in practice will be discussed there. Regular publication of intermediate results by e-mail has helped ensure that the qualification modules used in the project were also used outside the project activities.
2.Website with working platform: It provides documents created in the course of the project, including the working materials for conducting seminars. The interactive website also allows the project participants to continuously develop the seminar concept further by an exchange of experience and feedback given by practical users. In this respect the website is also an interactive part of quality management (also refer to Result 6).
3. Integrated qualification concept "TEAM.EWC" for EWC training events: This concept was transferred from two European predecessor projects. The predecessor project "LIFT.COM" was based on the approach of imparting intercultural competence and team building. The predecessor project "EWC coordinators" was based on the approach of imparting competence in European labour law and development of transnational negotiation competence. Both innovative approaches were transferred into the integrated qualification concept TEAM.EWC.
4. Manual: This document with the following content (materials, methodical instructions, guidelines, case studies, presentations) is made available to lecturers of the social partners’ education institutions.
5. Sustainability strategy: Inclusion of the qualification concept in the offer of the education institutions at the end of the project term. The start of implementation is in the spring of 2014.
6. Quality assurance in continuing vocational training:
At the end of the project, the partners agree that they will ensure certification and offer continuous further education for the lecturers who work in EWC training and ensure acceptance of theses offers.
All project results shall be reviewed at regular intervals in the future to ensure that they remain up-to-date and are further improved on the background of the lecturers' experience, and shall be adapted accordingly.
The implementation of the project results shall help intensify the network of lecturers at the European level.