Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Research actions in selected priority fields of employment policy

The European Commission, DG V, has published a call for proposals for research actions, of an experimental nature, aimed at promoting the exchange of experience and the generalization of good practice and know-how in selected priority fields of employment policy.

Since the publication, at the end of 1993, of the Commission's White Paper on growth, competitiveness and employment, and in the face of a persisting and intolerable level of unemployment, the highest authorities of the European Communities and Member States have constantly asserted their determination to make the fight against unemployment the highest priority issue of the Community in the forthcoming years.

Within this context, the Commission is intending to lend support, within the boundaries of its competence, to research actions of an experimental nature, aimed at a Community-wide promotion of the identification, transfer and generalization of good practice and know-how within priority employment policy areas as defined by the Community.

To be eligible, the proposed actions will be designed to serve as methodological and demonstrative instruments for the development of novel means of employment growth and will contain a substantial multiplier effect. In addition, each proposal will favour a cross-national analysis and take account of the active participation of actors.

Owing to the fact that this initiative concerns research actions, the exchange of experience and the transfer of good practice, Commission funding will not be granted to local projects, as these are eligible for funding under the Community's Structural Funds programme.

Priority will be given to actions which:

- Take account of the needs of social groupings requiring particular attention, such as young people in search of their first job, the long-term unemployed and unemployed women;
- Aim at preventing unemployment, in particular long-term unemployment.

Priority areas under this call are:

- Company employment policy:
. Actions in favour of employment which are related to new methods of work organization and working times, including a reduction in working times;
. Experience of salary reduction directly related to the hiring of workers, non-qualified in particular;
. Investments favouring labour-intensive employment;
. Experience of in-house company training related to the preservation or the creation of new positions in or outside the company;

- Active policies for labour-market management:
. Actions aimed at improving the effectiveness of labour-market management, in particular by improving services, including local services, employment services and integrated information, orientation, training and placing mechanisms;
. Experience related to the search for a level of maximum effectiveness of social security systems in favour of employment by a shift from a passive policy to one of active policy measures;
. Active policy measures for employment combined with in-house company training;

- Development of local employment:
. Encouragement of local development and employment initiatives, with particular reference to the methods developed in the Commission communication concerning the European strategy for the encouragement of local development and employment initiatives.

The call for proposals is open to economic and social actors in the wider sense (public or private organizations, companies, social partners, associative economic sectors, foundations, local or regional authorities, national administrations, etc.). As necessary, the actors concerned may be supported by research institutes.

For 1996, a total budget of approximately ECU 5 million has been set aside for financing these actions. Financial participation by the Community will amount to around 50% of total expenditure. Participation may be above this figure, without, however, exceeding 75% of total expenditure where the quality of the proposal or the nature of the applicant organization justifies it. Actions receiving Community financial assistance may in no case be profit-making.
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