Labour and innovation: Work-oriented innovations – a key to better employment, cohesion and competitiveness in a knowledge-intensive society
This report is based on the main findings of two workshops on Quality of Working Life, Industrial Relations and Labour Productivity as part of the WORK-IN-NET project. The workshops were organised by FAS, the Swedish Council for working life and social research, and VINNOVA, the Swedish Innovation Agency, and were held in Stockholm in the end of May 2005. WORK-IN-NET is a four-year (2004-08) project with the full title ‘Labour and Innovation: Work-Oriented Innovations – a Key to Better Employment, Cohesion and Competitiveness in a Knowledge-Intensive Society’. The project is funded within the Sixth Research Framework Programme of the European Commission. The overall aim of WORK-IN-NET is to set up sustainable communication and co-operation channels in Europe between the still fragmented national and regional research activities in the area of work-related innovation issues. To cope with the lasting innovation, productivity and employment challenges in European countries, the focus of WORK-IN-NET lies on three key themes: qualitative human resource development corporate social responsibilities and cultures, and regional development alliances.
Innovative interactions of all – national and regional – stakeholders and extended development coalitions are vital for achieving the goal set by the Lisbon European Council – to become the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world by 2010, capable of sustainable economic growth with more and better jobs and with greater social cohesion. Within the economic and technological changes towards globalisation the regional dimension is gaining momentum. The following pages offer an overview about the discussions during the workshop on R&Dprogrammes on corporate social responsibility, quality of working life and labour productivity. The main objective of these meetings of experts in the field was to foster a systematic exchange of information and good practices concerning existing research programmes on work-oriented innovations and work place development.
Claudio Zettel - Coordinator -
Foreword by the Swedish partners
In the end of May this year FAS and VINNOVA organised two workshops – or work packages – as a part of our agencies’ involvement in WORK-IN-NET, an ERA-NET on innovative work organisations and social cohesion in Europe. The themes of the workshops were Corporate Social Cultures for implementing Innovative Work Organisations, May 26, 2005 and Human Resource Management for Improving Quality of Working Life and Labour Productivity, May 27, 2005. The objective of the WORK-IN-NET-mission is the promotion of a systematic exchange of information and good practices with regard to specific national/regional approaches, moreover stimulating mutual learning processes on strategies and contents of the programmes, which may include a broad range of aspects. Special attention will be paid to the societal context of work life development policies. It is also necessary to identify current R&D-cultures and climates of innovative initiatives and policies. Considering this background, the Stockholm workshops focussed on the working balance between the state, the social partners, and the individual employees with the aim of creating better working conditions promoting labour productivity and quality. As a background for the workshops, national questionnaires have been developed (see appendices). We are grateful to Dr. Horst Hart, the FENIX programme at the Stockholm School of Economics, who has had the responsibility for reporting from the two workshops. We hope that his...