New Forms of Employment: threats and opportunities

Monday, 11 April 2016

At the end of March 2016, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) holded a hearing in Brussels on « The changing nature of employment relationships, the sharing economy, zero-hour contracts and the living wage ». The think & do tank POUR LA SOLIDARITÉ - PLS assisted to the event, and wrote a report highlighting the relevant issues on this matter.

In the last decade, loads of transformations have occurred in the European and domestic labour markets leading to emerging New Forms of Employment (NFE). As consequences of increasing digitalization and flexibility in working patterns, new forms of economy such as the sharing (or collaborative) economy set out the ground for surpassing the traditional and standard conceptions of employment, workers status and law. It raises a brand new array of challenges for regulators in multiple areas, namely in particular social protection, social dialogue, legal status, type of contracts, taxation, living wages, and collective bargaining. The main idea(l) behind all this is to ensure “just and fair working conditions for everyone” (Esther Lynch, ETUC).

These changes have two-side aspects whether regarding its positive or negative potential outcomes. First, it is obvious that it can be seen as opportunities in terms of job creation, driving growth through technological and (social) innovation. Yet, for some, these remaining unregulated sectors can be considered as a threat to worker’s rights. In any case, there is a need of a balanced approach to get the best benefits of this labour transitional trend. To debate about all these mentioned issues, the EESC organized a public hearing with speakers representing a quadripartite panel of employers, workers, policymakers and civil society stakeholders.



  1. Programme and speakers
  2. Nine new forms of employment (NFE) 
  3. Crowdwork and the sharing economy
  4. The role of Member states and Europe
  5. Are temporary and part-time works volunteerly chosen?
  6. Impact in the long-term 
  7. Further documentation on this issue



European Union