Project description

The Bargaining for working conditions and social rights of migrant workers in Central East European countries (BARMIG) project assesses the role of established industrial relations institutions in addressing the effects of migration on changing labour markets, and how trade unions and employer organisations in Czechia, Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland respond to these changes.

Project activities will shed light on constraints, opportunities and challenges for industrial relations actors stemming from the increased presence of migrant workers in four traditional sectors – healthcare, construction, hospitality and retail services, metal manufacturing, as well as in the digitalized economy(i.e. platform work).  Of particular concern to the research is the labour market integration of migrant workers from countries neighbouring the EU, particularly Ukraine and Serbia.  More specific aims are to map opportunities for policy influence for trade unions and employer organisations in the areas of migration policy, protection and representation of migrant workers’ interests, fair employment, and equal rights and integration for migrant workers, as well as through collective bargaining.

Within BARMIG, national reports and comparative studies will be published covering sector specificstrategies and actions that the social partners have undertaken to: address the working conditions of migrant workers; protect, represent and improve the social rights of labour migrants; adjust industrial relations structures and bargaining procedures to adjust to labour markets that rely on migrant work. Researchers of the consortium will also draft concrete recommendations aimed at improving the existing practices. The impacts ofdigitalizationacross the six Central East European countries on working conditions of migrant workers in all selected sectors will also be evaluated.

The project is supported by the European Commission (EC) and implemented by the University of Marie Curie Sklodowska (UMCS), the Association of Electrotechnical Industry (ZEP SR), the Central European Labour Studies Institute (CELSI), the Institute for Development and International Relations (IRMO), and the University of Tartu (UT).