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The impact of digitalisation on job quality and social dialogue in the public services - DIGIQU@LPUB

The European Social Observatory successfully secured the two-year (2021-2023) European Commission-funded DIGIQU@LPUB project. The study, which will be led by the OSE, aims at improving understanding of the impact of digitalisation on job quality in the public services, by highlighting the perceptions that workers themselves have of the changes generated by digitalisation in the performance of their daily tasks. It also aims at raising awareness among trade unions and decisionmakers of the consequences of the digital transition of work for the public services.

The concept of ‘digitalisation’ encompasses a number of intertwined aspects. In the framework of this project, digitalisation refers to the use of new digital technologies and their interplay with work-related transformation processes resulting from the introduction of such technologies. In recent years, public service workers are increasingly using connected organising tools and methods that shape the way their job tasks are organised, implemented, scheduled, controlled and ultimately benefit to the public services’ users. These new technological tools could take the form of applications for portable devices such as computers, tablets or smartphones but could also encompass other forms of digital transformation such as robotisation/automation (for example robots to help lift people) or artificial intelligence in data processing.

Specific objectives
° To assess the impact of digitalisation on job quality from the perspective of trade unions, but also of public service workers themselves. The intention is to identify the changes affecting the nature, content and implementation processes of the tasks involved in the jobs of public service workers, as well as the outcomes for the workers themselves.
° To explore how the challenges and opportunities for job quality generated by the digitalisation of work in public services are included and addressed in the dynamics and practices of social dialogue at national and sectoral levels in selected EU Member States.
° To enrich the debate about this topic among social partners and to provide advice, through hands-on policy recommendations, to both European and national trade unions and decision-makers, on suitable ways to address the digital transformation of work.
At the core of the project are eight case studies in as many countries: Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Spain. The focus is on three sectors: electricity (public utilities), national administrations (regional and local governments) and hospitals (health and social services). 
  Key events
  Final conference (Brussels)
25 September 2023
Programme & presentations
  National workshop (Warsaw) 24-25 April 2023
Public Round Table
25 April 2023 - Programme EN - PL
  Mid-term meeting (Brussels)
24-25 November 2022
Public Roundtable
November 2022
  EN - FR Programme EN
  National workshop (Madrid)
2 & 3 June 2022
Public Round Table

3 June 2022 - Programme EN - ES
  Kickoff meeting (Online)
22-23  November 2021
  Background documents
  The impact of digitalisation on job quality in European public services. The case of homecare and employment service workers
Peña-Casas, R., Ghailani, D. and Coster, S., OSE-EPSU, 2018  PDF
  Digitalization and Public Services: A Labour Perspective
Voss, E. and Rego, R., Public Services International (PSI), September 2019  PDF
  Digitalisation; Job quality; Sectoral social dialogue; Social partners; Public services; Work organisation


This is a project financed by the