Thomas Lefebvre

The COVID-19 pandemic has globally shifted millions of people from working at their workplace to teleworking from home.[1] Even though the pandemic seems to have subsided and people have returned to the office, the phenomenon of remote work has become an integral part of modern working life.[2] In this essay, I aim to demonstrate how…

The rise of digital nomads following the Covid-19 Pandemic   For years, workers have been longing professional and personal freedom, especially the Millennials and Gen Z population. The willingness to escape the so-called ‘rat race’ and the ‘9-to-5 mentality’ is omnipresent, and the yearning for a combination of work and vacation prevails.[1] Nonetheless, flexible work…

Are public sector workers called upon to subsidise public sector services? As attention turns away from the Covid-19 pandemic and towards the economic challenges it created, a familiar discussion point arises: how do governments now reduce and/or restrain public spending? Drawing from the immediate past The reduction/restraint approach was adopted in response to the Great…

Labour shortage Labour markets across Europe have become tight quite quickly after the pandemic with unemployment rates at record-low levels.  Eurozone businesses are confronted with unprecedented and widespread shortages of workers. According to the classical economic theory, in tight labour markets, workers gain bargaining power. However, wages have been stagnating for many decades now. Moreover,…

David and Goliath: workers’ data rights vs a vast market of surveillance An employer today can learn about interactions among employees or with customers via sensors and a vast variety of softwares. Is the tone of voice friendly enough with customers? How much time is spent on emailing or away from the assigned desk? Scores,…

On 14 September 2022, the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, delivered the State of the Union speech, where she laid out the main steps to be undertaken by the Commission in the next year. Unsurprisingly, and understandably, the vast majority of the speech was dedicated to the war in Ukraine and…

The proposed Directive on improving working conditions in platform work is gradually proceeding through the EU’s legislative institutions, with a key vote in the EP scheduled for 25 October. Beyond introducing protections in the case of algorithmic management, the most crucial innovation envisaged by the Directive is the stipulation of a conditional legal presumption of…

International Labour Organisation, Geneva © David Mangan

What scope is there for social partner dialogue? The current economic situation remains affected by the Covid-19 pandemic; whether it is directly related to the virus’ variants or the effects of emerging from lockdown.[1] Given these circumstances, the European Commission’s recent activity is positive, even if we may criticise the details. One of the larger…

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The emergence and implementation of the Framework Agreement Twenty years ago, on the 16th of July 2002, the European social partners concluded the first autonomous Framework Agreement. The topic of this Framework Agreement, telework, could not be more relevant today. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the principles laid down in this agreement guided…