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Durham e-Theses
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The European social dialogue: the role of management and labour in the creation of European social regulation

Campbell, Elinor (1997) The European social dialogue: the role of management and labour in the creation of European social regulation. Masters thesis, Durham University.



Proposals for social regulation at the level of the European Community have proved highly controversial. The Protocol and Agreement on Social Policy (SPA), agreed at Maastricht, provide the potential for a more expansive framework of Community social regulation by setting out wider express legal bases for social action than were previously available in the EC Treaty. The SPA also introduces into the decision making process an extended role for the representatives of management and labour, the "social partners" both in the creation and implementation of social regulation. This "social dialogue" process allows regulation to take the form either of legislation or collective agreements. The SPA applies to 14 of the 15 Member States, excluding the UK, whose Conservative Government remain staunchly opposed to increases in social regulation. This thesis aims to consider the impact of the introduction of the social dialogue process on the creation of European social regulation. After an assessment of the background to the social dialogue, the new decision making process is examined in detail. Consideration is given to the scope of the new legal bases, the practical difficulties inherent within the consultation and negotiation processes and the possibilities for the adoption of European level collective agreements. The thesis then turns to a theoretical assessment of the social dialogue in the light of the European Community's commitments to subsidiarity and democracy. The main conclusion drawn is that the SPA social dialogue has created the potential for the autonomous development of European collective labour law. However, a combination of the present inefficiencies of the social dialogue procedure and the personalities involved in the dialogue make the fulfilment of this potential unlikely in the near future.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Jurisprudence
Thesis Date:1997
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:13 Sep 2012 15:52

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