12. september 2012

Increasing employee influence through SE works councils

- Experiences from a non-headquarter production site in Denmark

Paper by Anna Ilsøe

The creation of a European Company or a Societas Europaea (SE) has been a possibility within the EU since 2001. According to EU regulations, companies cannot create a SE without negotiating an agreement on a SE works council and a SE board with employee participation.

This paper investigates how non-headquarter employee representatives in SE works councils experience their influence on managerial decisions at the headquarter of the company. It examines the case of the first European Company present in Denmark, MAN Diesel & Turbo, which became a SE in 2006 and has its headquarter in Germany.

Empirically the paper is based on interviews with two shop stewards from the MAN Diesel & Turbo production site in Copenhagen and with the local site manager as well as a secondary analysis of existing literature on SEs.

The case study shows that the participation in the SE works council has led to increased information and influence for the Danish shop stewards not only at European level but also at local level.

Paper presented at the IREC Conference 2012 (Industrial Relations in Europe Conference), Lisbon, 5-7 September 2012.