Theme

Technology changes working life

Working life goes through great changes from time to time. Globalisation forces jobs abroad, trades face tough competition as a result of liberalisation, new ways of organising work emerge or there is demographic change. Right now technology is having an overwhelming impact on working life. A combination of several technological changes, like robotisation and 3D printing, means the nature of manufacturing and services is changing completely. The Nordic Labour Journal looks at what technology means to working life.

Apr 11, 2014 | Foto: Daniel Boschung

In the picture above the photographer Daniel Boschung uses an ABB-robot to map a face with 600 pictures.

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Agreement on main contractor liability stopped strike (Apr 04, 2014) A bit of history was written in the evening of 31 March when a new collective agreement was reached on main contractor liability within the Swedish construction industry. It prevented strike action with hours to spare and will see the employers’ organisation the Swedish Construction Federation (BI) establishing a fund to guarantee wages for subcontractors’ workers.
Unique judgement - managers guilty of employee’s suicide (Mar 05, 2014) In Sweden two managers at a social services centre were found guilty in February of causing an employee’s depression and suicide. The judgement is unique. Never before has an employer been found guilty of causing psychological illness, and regardless of whether it is overturned on appeal this judgement serves as a wake-up call for Swedish employers.
Mikael Sjöberg new head of the Swedish Public Employment Service (Mar 03, 2014) The Swedish Public Employment Service has a new Director-General. Mikael Sjöberg comes from the post as Director-General at the Swedish Work Environment Authority. The Employment Service’s former head was fired in August last year.
Fewer deaths at work (Feb 11, 2014) The number of deaths in Nordic workplaces continues to fall, according to preliminary figures collected by NLJ for last year from Finland, Sweden and Denmark. But there has been an increase in fatal accident in Norway, a trend which has repeated itself for the past three years.
Recommendations ready for new Danish employment policy (Feb 06, 2014) There will be major changes to measures aimed at unemployed people on benefit if the Danish government follows the recently published recommendations from the so-called Carsten Koch committee. A new employment policy is expected to be ready before the summer recess.
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Editorial: The technology leap - a taste of the future (Apr 11, 2014) Comments Artificial intelligence. The words stimulate the imagination and creativity. What can a robot do? What can 3D technology do for us? How many care sector jobs will be replaced with welfare technology? And imagine what information this editorial might contain if it was written by a robot? This month the Nordic Labour Journal offers a taste of a future with new technology.
Ólafía Rafnsdóttir: Women needed in the wage rate decision process (Apr 11, 2014) Portrait Iceland is known internationally for its strong female leaders, but men have been the ones deciding wage rates. Ólafía B. Rafnsdóttir became the first female President in 122 years of Iceland’s trade union for commercial workers, VR, when she was elected last year.
Editorial: Women strongest in times of change (Mar 05, 2014) Comments Nordic countries have cooperated on gender equality for 40 years. Now it’s paying off. The Nordic Labour Journal’s gender equality barometer shows Norway is a world leader in equality. For the first time ever, women and men have an equal share of positions of power.
The salary gap: a stain on Finland’s reputation (Mar 05, 2014) Portrait When it comes to female representation in business and politics, Finland is a leader in the EU in a range of fields. The Ombudsman for Equality, Pirkko Mäkinen, is particularly pleased with the fact that Finland has better female representation in boardrooms than any other EU country - 27 percent - without having to use gender quotas. Compared to its Nordic neighbours, Finland even has a high proportion of women in political positions of power. But apart from that, she finds little cause for celebration.
Editorial: Who can come, who can stay and who deserves a worthy life? (Feb 11, 2014) Comments Sweden is a strong proponent for a generous and open immigration policy. The differences between the Nordic countries become clear. Minister for Integration Erik Ullenhag stands out when he talks to the Nordic Labour Journal and warns against what he sees to be developing in several European countries — anti-immigrant parties on the rise and a general move towards stricter and more immigrant-critical policies. Nevertheless, new measures for better integration is being promoted by many.
Solveig Horne, minister with a blue-blue view of Norwegian integration (Feb 11, 2014) Portrait “I am now in government,” says the Progress Party’s Minister of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion Solveig Horne. She will stick to the cooperation agreement with the Conservatives and the supporting parties the Liberals and Christian Democrats. There’s a lot of good Progress Party politics right there, says the government minister. She has “no comment” about party colleagues who call for more Progress Party politics.
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Rafnsdottir front page Ólafía Rafnsdóttir: Women needed in the wage rate decision process

Iceland is known internationally for its strong female leaders, but men have been the ones deciding wage rates. Ólafía B. Rafnsdóttir became the first female President in 122 years of Iceland’s trade union for commercial workers, VR, when she was elected last year.

“Women must be willing to take more responsibility for influencing how the ASÍ leadership develops, as well as that of the individual trade unions,” she says.

ASÍ is the Icelandic Confederation of Labour, and unlike the Confederation of State and Municipal Employees, ASÍ has never had a female in a leadership position. Ólafía B. Rafnsdóttir is the first female leader in one of the member unions. She joined VR as a switchboard operator in 1989 and has worked her way up the career ladder ever since.

“It is a challenge for me to be the first female leader of VR’s 122 year long history,” the VR President Ólafía B. Rafnsdóttir said proudly.

 

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Unemployment

Per cent of workforce -
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Denmark 7,0 - February

Finland 9.1 - February

Norway 3.5 - January

Iceland 4.2 - February

Sweden 8.5 - February

OECD 7.6 - January

Eurostat

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