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TCO's Eva Nordmark: unions must be relevant to our time

TCO's Eva Nordmark: unions must be relevant to our time

(Jun 16, 2011) "The union's role is to be relevant in today's working life, which is considerably different from the time when my parents started working. Yet the basic values remain the same. As always the union is about the dream of freedom, development and having the chance to live a good life," says Eva Nordmark, newly elected chairperson for one of the world's largest organisations representing professional employees, TCO. It comprises 15 trade unions with 1.2 million members.

Editorial: Language - a source for joint understanding

(May 10, 2011) "Have you heard your employer use the word 'safety' and do you know what that word means?" asks the language teacher at Vestegnen's Language and Competence Centre south of Copenhagen. The quote touches on the depth of the challenges posed by not understanding a language.

Norway's Rigmor Aasrud to uncover the myth of a uniform Nordic region

Norway's Rigmor Aasrud to uncover the myth of a uniform Nordic region

(May 10, 2011) Norway's Cooperation Minister Rigmor Aasrud wants to engage the Nordic countries' grass roots when Norway takes on the Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers in 2012. She feels the Nordic welfare models could be a theme which could appeal to both the general public and stimulate debate among politicians. Other important issues will be a better understanding of the Scandinavian languages and simplified border controls.

Nokia's scraps mobile ecosystem in fight to survive

(May 02, 2011) Nokia is shedding thousands of staff world-wide - the equivalent of one in ten workers within its mobile telephone business. The move is part of Nokia's attempt to remain in profit and improve the growth outlook within a completely new technological ecosystem.

Editorial: Mobile labour creates turbulence

(Apr 07, 2011) "I have freed my own work from the shackles of time and space," says the head of Microsoft Finland in our piece on open plan office spaces. He commutes in time and space between his virtual and real mobile workplace.

Temporary work agencies: misfits in Nordic working life?

(Apr 07, 2011) This year will see the implementation of the EU directive on temporary agency work which is meant to improve labour mobility and facilitate the growth in temporary work agencies. It will also lay down demands for equal treatment of permanent staff and workers recruited through temporary work agencies. But do we know enough about the phenomenon that is temporary work agencies? Are the Nordic welfare societies ready for such a player on the labour market?

The employers' voice in the European dialogue

The employers' voice in the European dialogue

(Apr 07, 2011) Will the social partners reach agreement on the working time directive like they managed to come to an agreement on work-related stress? Initial talks have begun but nobody knows how it will end. The social dialogue is nevertheless playing a part in Europe's policy development.

Editorial: Vision or reality?

(Mar 07, 2011) Will Danes vote for a female prime minister in the coming election? In real life? That would be the first time.

Motherhood vs career logic rules

(Mar 07, 2011) We're all equal now, right? More women than ever get an education, there are new ideals for what it means to be a father and family-friendly solutions have changed the framework for how mothers' and fathers' adapt to work and family life. Yet my dissertation 'Mothers and fathers meet the rules of career logic' shows these social changes have not been enough to achieve gender equality in working life or in family life.

Challenge to Finland's health sector "not due to lack of resources”

Challenge to Finland's health sector "not due to lack of resources”

(Mar 07, 2011) Finland's health and social care sector is facing major challenges. But this is not about a lack of resources. Systems and processes need an overhaul to allow doctors and nurses to work with what they have been trained for: to take care of people, Finland's Minister of Social Affairs and Health Juha Rehula tells Nordic Labour Journal.

Editorial: The need to limit working life without boundaries

(Feb 11, 2011) Mixing work and free time can have unwanted consequences. Nordic Labour Journal puts the spotlight on our portable working hours. How will we deal with the grey zone between work and free time?

Working hours: a hot topic for the Labour Inspection Authority director

Working hours: a hot topic for the Labour Inspection Authority director

(Feb 11, 2011) Ingrid Finboe Svendsen's dream is to create a popular drive for a better work environment. The Norwegian Labour Inspection Authority has often been in the spotlight for dealing with cases of social dumbing, but the Authority's director wants to showcase the full scope of what the organisation does. And this is where Facebook comes in.

Work is top priority in integration of Sweden's new arrivals

(Feb 09, 2011) As soon as newly arrived refugees are granted permission to stay in Sweden the process of getting them established in society begins. The goal is to cut the time it takes to get settled into the labour market. Those who want to can use personal guides who'll help them with work and integration.

Hillevi Engström: more social responsibility needed in working life

Hillevi Engström: more social responsibility needed in working life

(Nov 24, 2010) Once the leading star of Swedish Police, Hillevi Engström is now in charge of whipping working life into line. She wants to use her role as Minister for Employment to challenge businesses to take social responsibility. In return she offers economical incentives and an improved education system.

Will Lex Laval work?

(Nov 02, 2010) On 9 September the Swedish Building Workers' Union (Byggnads) took industrial action against a Lithuanian company building a school in Höllviken in Southern Sweden. The union demanded the company paid its Lithuanian workers according Swedish salary agreements. Are we heading towards a new Laval ruling?

Guðbjartur Hannesson - Iceland's Minister for Welfare

Guðbjartur Hannesson - Iceland's Minister for Welfare

(Oct 03, 2010) Guðbjartur Hannesson is Iceland's new minister in charge of merging all welfare issues into one ministry. He must do this while the country's budget is cut to the bone in the wake of the 2008 crash which left the country's economy in ruins. The Ministry of Welfare must be up and running by the end of the year.

Iceland's new slimmed-down and EU-critical government

(Sep 29, 2010) Iceland's government has been cut from twelve to ten ministers. Prime Minister Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir says the ministerial posts will be cut further in the new year with the merging of several departments.

Finland's Anni Sinnemäki: passionate about an individually tailored welfare system

Finland's Anni Sinnemäki: passionate about an individually tailored welfare system

(Aug 31, 2010) Finland's Minister of Labour wants to make individuals visible. Young people should not be seen as a uniform group but as separate people with different needs. In Finland a lot of time has been spent analysing each person's situation, and as a result, she says, the state can offer more rational measures tailored to the individual's needs.

Red cabinet member - impatient in the long run

Red cabinet member - impatient in the long run

(Jun 30, 2010) Audun Lysbakken swears that it is he - and not the media - who will set the agenda for his ministry's work. That means working on long-term, preventative measures to avoid people becoming social outsiders - results of which will not show up on statistics for another 10 to 15 years.

National pride gave Icelanders tunnel-vision

National pride gave Icelanders tunnel-vision

(May 24, 2010) Icelanders help each other out in bad times. But when it comes to a man-made crisis they don't really know how to act.

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