Labour law has traditionally aimed to protect the employee under a hierarchy built on constitutional provisions, statutory law, collective agreements at various levels, and the employment contract, in that order. However, in employment regulation in recent years, 'flexibility' has come to dominate the world of work - a set of policies that reshuffle the relationship among the fundamental pillars of labour law and inevitably lead to degrading the protection of employees. This book, the first-ever to consider the sources of labour law from a comparative perspective, details the ways in which the traditional hierarchy of sources has been altered, presenting an international view on major cross-cutting issues followed by fifteen country reports.
The authors' analysis of the changing hierarchy of labour law sources in the light of recent trends includes such elements as the following:
- the constitutional dimension of labour rights;
- the normative intervention by the State;
- the regulatory function of collective bargaining and agreements;
- the hierarchical organization of labour law sources and the 'principle of favour';
- the role played by case law in both common law and civil law countries;
- the impact of the European Economic Governance;
- decentralization of collective bargaining;
- employment conditions as key components of global competitive strategies;
- statutory schemes that allow employees to sign away their rights.
National reports - Australia, Brazil, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States - describe the structure of labour law regulations in each legal system with emphasis on the current state of affairs. The authors, all distinguished labour law scholars in their countries, thus collectively provide a thorough and comprehensive commentary on labour law regulation and recent tendencies in national labour laws in various corners of the globe.
With its definitive analysis of such crucial matters as the decentralization of collective bargaining and how individual employment contracts can deviate from collective agreements and statutory law, and its comparison of representative national labour law systems, this highly informative book will prove of inestimable value to all professionals concerned with employment relations, labour disputes, or labour market policy, especially in the context of multinational workforces.