This study examines the impact of the financial crisis on public sector labour relations in four countries, as a result of which marked differences become apparent. After the crisis, the public sectors in the UK and Spain were subject to pronounced austerity measures, which had a massive impact on earnings and employment conditions as well as on the recognition and the rights of employees and trade unions. The crisis impacted differently on Sweden and Germany, however. Employment conditions had already deteriorated in Germany before the crisis, and since then earnings have been increasing. Despite all the procedural differences, the retrenchment of public services and the weakening of labour rights reveal themselves to be constant political projects.
This study was conducted by an international and interdisciplinary team of sociologists, political scientists and historians at the Research Institute for Work, Technology and Culture (F.A.T.K.).