Social policy in the European Union: state of play 2020

The OSE was contracted by the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) to conduct research which will result in the 21st edition of the ‘Bilan social’ (its shorter name in French), to be edited by Bart Vanhercke, Slavina Spasova and Boris Fronteddu. This year’s contributors include Karen Anderson, Anniek de Ruijter, Dalila Ghailani, Scott Greer, Éloi Laurent, Matteo Mandelli, Martin Myant, Jill Rubery, Sebastiano Sabato and Ramón Peña-Casas.

Chapter 1 will discuss the prospects for EU social policymaking in the context of the 2019 European elections and the COVID-19 crisis. Chapter 2 critically discusses the management of the EU’s public health crisis during the first months of the pandemic. Chapter 3 analyses the economic and labour market consequences, at both the EU and national level, of COVID-19. Chapter 4 focuses on the gendered impact of the pandemic, while providing a state of play of the announced Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2025. Chapter 5 will make the case for a reappraisal of the Green Deal in the light of the Covid-19 crisis, calling for a European commitment to robust social-ecological policies. Chapter 6 evaluates the integration of the Sustainable Development Goals and the European Pillar of Social Rights into the European Semester. Chapter 7, finally, links the recent debates about a minimum wage for the EU to the alarming findings regarding increased polarisation and in-work poverty in Europe. The chronology summarises the key social, economic and environmental events of 2020.