Trade Unions as Knowledgeable Participants in Workplace Innovation

Following up EUWIN’s Copenhagen Workshop

A Workshop hosted by LO (the Danish Confederation of Trade Unions) and CO-Industri (the Central Organisation of Industrial Employees in Denmark) is stimulating new cross-border co-operation between trade unions.

You can contribute your ideas below or learn more about the trade union role in stimulating, resourcing and sustaining workplace innovation here

The Workshop

Over two days, some 45 participants from ten countries addressed two key questions: 
  • How does workplace innovation benefit workers?
  • How can trade unions play an active role as “knowledgeable participants” in workplace innovation through the  provision of expertise and expert facilitation?

Participants also discussed good practice guidelines for other unions in Europe which are not involved in such initiatives, and to identify the potential for further collaboration.

You can download a copy of the workshop programme here.

. . . and afterwards

The Copenhagen Workshop was just the start.
By the end of the event, most participants felt strongly about keeping the conversation going and actively identifying new opportunities for collaborative action across national borders.

Here are some of the agreed actions:

Build EUWIN as a mass movement
Invite at least 10 other people to sign up for EUWIN at !

Share and learn
Many participants already have case studies, tools and resources that can be shared, involving no more than translation costs.
A special section will be created in the EUWIN Knowledge Bank to bring these resources together.
Participants will share invitations to each other’s events.
The Knowledge Bank will also include a directory of “Trade Union Ambassadors” – people willing to share their knowledge and experience.

Create new resources 
 A simple toolkit based on the union-led initiatives discussed at the Workshop would be a valuable resource both for shared learning and for promoting action in other countries. Participants will explore funding possibilities.
Sense-making narratives targeted at union representatives will be added to EUWIN’s Knowledge Bank.

Reach out to other trade unions
We recognise that most trade unions in Europe are not yet actively engaged in workplace innovation. The potential for an International Summer School will be investigated as a means of bringing unions together from across Europe.
Meanwhile unions will be invited to take part in all main EUWIN events.

Gain influence
Unions actively involved in workplace innovation will approach the ETUC and ETUI to stress its importance and to share their experiences of how unions can take the initiative.

What now?
Do you have experience of union intervention in workplace innovation?

Do you have good practice case studies, tools or other resources to share?

Do you have ideas about how we can take this further?


Login or join EUWIN to add your thoughts now to the discussion forum below!

Trade Unions as Knowledgeable Participants in Workplace Innovation

Discussion forum following the Trade Unions as Knowledgeable Participants in Workplace Innovation conference in Copenhagen - April, 2014.
Topics: 2 Posts: 2 08-May-2014
by Peter

Please contact Pia Mulvad Reksten ( or Peter Totterdill ( for more information.

  The Central Organisation of Industrial Employees in Denmark     The Danish Confederation of Trade Unions