Theme

Iceland back on an even keel

Iceland is bouncing back after the hard years following the 2008 crisis. In this month’s theme we tell the story of what happened that day, how Icelanders joined forces to stop anyone from going hungry and to stop hard-hit youths from becoming social outsiders. The worst is now over. New opportunities arise. Unemployment is falling nearly as fast as it rose, and as the economy improves Icelanders want a better life; more pay and more gender equality. Iceland is full of life, new ventures, inventions, a new concert hall and jobs for more people.

Jun 17, 2014 | Photo: Björn Lindahl

In the picture above a worker at the Reykjavik shipyard is removing old paint and grit from the keel of a vessel.

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Latest news
The Nordic model: From Reykjavik to Paris (Jun 17, 2014) “The Nordic countries need to stay on course. They will be an example to other countries, a reference point, particularly when it comes to the harmony between growth and really good social standards,” says Christian Kastrop, newly appointed Director for the Policy Studies Branch at the OECD’s economy department.
Conflict over part time labour stops Swedish trains (Jun 17, 2014) A train strike in southern Sweden has put renewed focus on how competition for public contracts affects the rights of the contractors’ employees, and to which extent the procuring authority can interfere in their working and employment conditions.
Iceland initiates a Nordic welfare watch (Jun 17, 2014) As part as its presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers, Iceland has initiated a research project to look into the possibilities and interest for creating a Nordic welfare watch. Researchers in the Nordic countries will work together until 2016 to map how economic crisis influence welfare and how it can be made sustainable also during bad times.
What about the next 60? New report predicts continued success for the Nordic model (May 07, 2014) “We need to make adjustments going forward, but if we do we have every chance of succeeding,” says the Managing Director of the Research Institute of the Finnish Economy, Vesa Vihriälä. He is just finishing a report on the challenges facing the Nordic welfare model in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.
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.
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Recent articles
Editorial: Look to Iceland (Jun 17, 2014) Comments “Look how well the Icelanders have recovered from the crisis, “ says Christian Kastrop, Director at the OECD. And we will; our theme this time is Iceland’s transformation since the crisis hit in 2008. We also follow the report on the Nordic model, first launched in Reykjavik, to the OECD’s Paris headquarters.
Stine Bosse: Keep the Nordic region a sweet spot (Jun 17, 2014) Portrait The Nordic region is a privileged sweet spot, and should remain one. But it means fully embracing the EU says Danish Stine Bosse, named one of the world’s most powerful businesswomen many times over.
Editorial: A piece of Nordic contemporary history (May 08, 2014) Comments On 22 May 1954 the agreement on a joint Nordic labour market was signed. 60 years on the Nordic Labour Journal talks to Nordic citizens who in each of the six decades tried their luck in a different Nordic country — and we look at how the agreement came to be.
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.
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Stine Bosse Stine Bosse: Keep the Nordic region a sweet spot

The Nordic region is a privileged sweet spot, and should remain one. But it means fully embracing the EU says Danish Stine Bosse, named one of the world’s most powerful businesswomen many times over.

Stine Bosse’s words are aimed at political parties in both Denmark and other Nordic countries which are currently moving away from European cooperation. In Denmark she sees this tendency especially among the opposition parties The Red-Green Alliance and the Danish People’s Party. They are at opposite ends of the political spectre but both are taking aim at the EU’s cornerstones.  

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Unemployment

Per cent of workforce -
link to source:

Denmark 6.5 - May

Finland 10.7 - May

Norway 3.3 - April

Iceland 7.1 - May

Sweden 8.0 - May

OECD 7.4 - April

Eurostat

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