Dr. Sonia Lucarelli – Senior Researcher and Lecturer, University of Bologna

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Study Abroad Opportunity


Labour in Europe:
working together and living together
Social Europe Days
European Union Excursion 2009
17th March- 20th March 2009 incl

➢ Tallinn University

➢ Fachhochschule Köln, Cologne University of Applied Sciences

➢ Hanzehogeschool Groningen, Hanze University of Applied Sciences

➢ Katholieke Hogeschool Leuven, Leuven University College

➢ Universidad de Malaga, Malaga University. Faculdad de Estudios sociales y del Trabajo

➢ Zürcher Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften, Zurich University of Applied Sciences

➢ Fachhochschule München, Munich University of Applied Sciences


This is the new programme of the European Union excursion 2009, that will take place from Tuesday 17th March until Friday 20th March incl. In this programme you can read the plans for the days in Brussels, Vaalbeek and Leuven with schedules and time tables. Though these schedules look rather strict, the times that are mentioned are indicative. Try to stick to the times mentioned. In this booklet you also find the address of the Conference Centre, La Foresta, in case that you might get lost. We think we have built an interesting and varied program for the Brussels week again with among other things:
• An Introduction to Europe and the European Union (title “Social Europe: work and live together in Europe”) by Dr Arnout Justaert from the Catholic University of Leuven and Dr. Miel Vervliet, Leuven Catholic University of Applied Sciences
• A lecture by Jean Luc Dehaene, member of the European Parliament and former Prime Minister of Belgium in several coalition governments (1992-1999)
• A visit to the European Parliament and discussions with Members of the European Parliament:
➢ Mrs. Esther de Lange, Dutch member of the European Parliament for the Christian Democrats, EPP (European Peoples Party)
➢ Mr. Ivo Belet, Belgian member of the European Parliamant for the Christian Democrats (European Peoples Party)
➢ A Spanish member and or German Member of the European Parliament
• A visit to the plenary assembly room of the European Parliament (guided tour Luc Groot)
• A visit to the Palais de Justice, the Brussels Court of Justice, the highest court in Belgium and, though not being a EU institution, very interesting to visit for students and lecturers
• Getting to know each other, cooperate, work together, exchange experiences with students and lecturers of partner universities in Tallinn, Malaga, Zurich, Leuven, Cologne, Munich and Groningen
• Workshops organised for and by students with topics in the field of labour reintegration, social security systems, demographic change, poverty and social exclusion, migration and equal treatment of men and women
• A plenary European “House of Commons-discussion” with awards for the best debaters
• Sharing experiences related to student placements abroad and working and living in an other country, an other culture in or outside Europe
• Wednesday afternoon and Wednesday evening with several activities and optional workshops:
– Social walk (excursion) through Brussels
– We and the World, Intercultural Training and Salsa Dancing
– After 22:00: Meeting, enjoying and dancing
• Guestlectures at Leuven University College by Dr Jef Peeters, Mr Annemie Deproft and Jan van Passel
Moreover we visit Vaalbeek, Brussels and Leuven. We hope that together we can make this excursion a valuable and pleasant experience again.

The lecturers of the Excursion committee :

• Leuven: Jan van Passel, Katrien Vergauwen, Nadia Quintens, Veronique Debeys, Rudi Reynaert, Jef Peeters and Mia Claes
• Cologne/Munich: Ute Kötter, Gerd Sadowski and Alf Scheidgen
• Tallinn: Karmen Lai and Margo Kikas
• Zürich: Hanspeter Hongler and Uwe Koch
• Malaga: Maria Luisa Gomez and Juan Martin Aguirre de Mena
• Groningen: Willem van Olst, Titia Mulder, Jos Schoonhoven and Theo Koning

General information

• Theme of the week:
“Labour in Europe: working and living together”.

• Participants: 133 !!
> Leuven: 037 students and 07 lecturers
> Groningen*: 040 students and 03 lecturers 1 SEC-member,
> Cologne: 017 students and 02 lecturers
> Munich: 000 students and 01 lecturer
> Tallinn: 007 students and 02 lecturers
> Malaga: 005 students and 02 lecturers
> Zürich: 005 students and 02 lecturers
> In total: 111 students and 19 lecturers 1 SEC member

* From Groningen too: 1 bus driver Arriva and a journalist from HANZEMAG, the Hanze University Newspaper, Leonie Veraar

• Language
We agreed on English as the official language but of course language should not be an abstacle. If necessary or desired we will take care for summarizing interpretations.

• Place/Location
“La Foresta”, Prosperdreef 9, 3054 Vaalbeek, Tel. 0032 16 402491, Fax 0032 16400883.

• Dates: Arrival and departure

* Groningen participants: Tuesday afternoon March 17- Friday afternoon March 20

* Cologne participants: Tuesday afternoon March 17- Friday afternoon March 20

* Munich participants: Tuesday afternoon March 17- Friday afternoon March 20

* Leuven participants: Tuesday morning March 17- Thursday evening March 19.

* Tallinn participants: Monday evening March 16 (16:00 Brussels airport)- Friday morning March 20 (10:25 Brussels airport)

* Malaga participants: Monday evening March 16 (17:35 Brussels airport)– Saturday morning March 21 (11.10 Brussels airport)

* Zürich participants: Tuesday morning March 17 (10:30 Brussels airport)– Friday evening March 20 (18:14 Brussels airport)

Tuesday 17th March 2009

• Groningen
07.30 a.m. Leaving from Groningen Central Train Station (at Kool boat tour company) with Arriva-bus to Vaalbeek. We stop in Hoogeveen at about 08.15 (Railwaystation Hoogeveen) where Marloes and Ricardo get in.
About 13.00/13.30 p.m. arrival at “La Foresta”. After arrival coffee and tea will be served and there will be enough time to check in.
• Arrival Cologne and Munich at “La Foresta” 13.00/14:00
• Arrival Leuven at “La Foresta” in the morning 17/3/09
• Arrival Tallinn at “La Foresta” on Monday evening
• Arrival Zürich at Brussels 10.30 a.m. (17/3/09)
• Arrival Malaga at Brussels 16/3/09 17.35 p.m.

• 14:00-15:30 Warm welcome, getting to know each other and introduction to the programme.
• 15:30-17:00 (La Foresta) Getting to know each other in smaller groups (see annex 4: workshop groups) and mutual comparison of the BA-courses in Cologne/Munich, Malaga, Groningen, Zürich, Leuven and Tallinn:
➢ BA in Social Work (Cologne University of Applied Sciences, Munich University of Applied Sciences, Tallinn University, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Leuven University College)
➢ BA in Human Resource Management/Employment Relations/Industrial Relations (Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen and Malaga University)
• Relevant aspects (see annex 1 with questions about the BA-comparison)
1. study grants and tuition fees
2. the curriculum
3. final projects
4. interships/student placement and work experience
5. workfields of the BA’s
• 17:00-18:00 Introduction by Dr. Arnout Justaert and Dr. Miel Vervliet about “Labour in Europe: working and living together from an international European Union point of view”:
➢ Europe, Migration and the Labour Market (Justaert)
➢ Europe and the international financial crisis (Vervliet)

• 18:00-19:00 (La Foresta) Dinner
• 19:00-20:00 Leaving for Leuven. Students are being guided through the city center of Leuven by Flemish students and the lecturers by the Flemish lecturers, combined with a common drink in internationally composed groups (see annex 5: workshop groups)
• 23:00/23:30 Return of the groups from Leuven to “La Foresta”
• Bus from Groningen brings all the participants to Leuven and bus(ses) from Leuven bring(s) them back home.

Wednesday 18th March 2009

• 07.30-08.30 (La Foresta) Breakfast
• 08.30-10.00 Leaving for and Arrival at the European Parliament

• 10.15-10.45 Guided tour through the EP Luc Groot assistant to Esther de Lange)
• 11.00-11:45 Meeting with Esther De Lange (MEP-Member of the EP for the Netherlands) room EAS 170
• 11:45-12.30 Meeting with Ivo Belet (MEP-Member of the EP for Belgium) room EAS 170

• 12.30-13.30 p.m. Lunch at the Restaurant of the European Parliament Rue Wiertz 60, 1047 Brussels

• 13.30-14.30 p.m. Keynote speaker: Jean Luc Dehaene. Room: EAS 100 (Eastmanzaal)

• 14.30-15.00 p.m. Travel by busses to Center of Brussels
• 15.00-18.00 p.m. Leisure in Centre of Brussels or optional Social Brussels excursion (students have to look for a meal themselves)

➢ optional: Social walk through Brussels: Brussels has far more to offer than a train station, a shopping street, some famous museums and the European Parliament. If you want the visit some hidden spots in the city of Brussels, join the walking tour of 1,5 hours. Some experts will show you around in these areas where most tourists don’t come.

• 18.00-19.00 p.m. Return from Brussels to La Foresta
• 19.30-22.00 Workshops:
• We And The World. Study, live and work in other cultures, experiences and testimonies and exchanges of ideas and experiences
• Salsadancing For those who like to stretch there legs and enjoy the arousing rhythm of Latin-American music: enjoy this initiation course in salsa-dancing. Your dancing teacher will be Kebe Ibrahim, one of the Belgian participants of the Social Europe days. (P.S. you don’t need to be a dancing expert ! )
• Intercultural training (optional): see annex

• 22.00:
• Meeting, Enjoying and Dancing: a thematic evening of meeting and relaxing, a cousy being together.

Thursday 19th March 2009

• 08.00-09.00 a.m. (La Foresta) Breakfast

• 09.00-12.00 p.m. European House of Commons-discussion, a discussion form that was quite popular in the Netherlands and has proven to be a suitable form for the Brussels week.
• The main theme will be: Labour in Europe, working together and living together. From each of the 4 “old universities” (Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and Estonia) 2 students bring in I or 2 statements with the most important arguments pro and contra in about 1 page per statement. At the beginning of the discussions the students share the handouts with the statements and arguments, introduce the theme and statements and finally come to conclusions. After each discussion Mrs Esther de Lange, member of the European Parliament will comment the discussions and compare them with the real discussions on the issues within the EP. At the end of the session she will award the best debater of each university/country and Mr. Willem van Olst from Hanze University of Groningen will lead the discussion.

• As students and lecturers froms Zürich and Malaga are this year our guests and participate for the first time they are invited to take part in the discussion but they need not prepare statements.

• 12.00-13.30 p.m. Lunch

• 13.30-17.00 p.m. International workshops on Labour in Europe: working and living together: 6 themes and 12 international groups of about 8-10 student each, so every theme is dealt with in two workshops

➢ Workshop 1: Activation, Reintegration and Municipal Employment Projects
➢ Workshop 2: Wages and Social Benefit Systems versus Activating Welfare State
➢ Workshop 3: Demographic Change: Elderly, Labour and Labour market
➢ Workshop 4: Equal chances? Povery and Social Exclusion in Europe
➢ Workshop 5: Migrants, Social Cohesion and the Labour Market
➢ Workshop 6: Equal treatment of Men and Women

➢ 13.30-13.45 preparations for every country, assignment of duties in each workshop (leading discussion, making notes for plenary report etc.)
➢ 13.45-15.15: the students of the six countries give their. Each country presents its results in about 10/15 minutes and every time about 5/10 minutes for questions and answers.
➢ 15.15-15.30: Coffee/tea break
➢ 15.30-16:30: Discussion in workshops on (1) similarities between the 6 countries in the field that was discussed (2) main differences (3) evaluation of the differences and similarities (4) conclusions: what could we learn from each other within Europe/European Union ?
➢ 16.30-17.00 p.m.: Plenary reports of the main results and conclusions of each workshop

• 18:00 Banquet in La Foresta with subsequent farewell of the Belgian and Tallinn students and lecturers. Tallinnn delegations leave the next morning
• 19.30 p.m. Free evening in Leuven for participants from Cologne, Munich, Groningen, Malaga, Tallinn and Zurich
• 11.30 p.m. and 00.15 Return to La Foresta in Vaalbeek

Friday 20th March 2009

• 07.30-08.30 (La Foresta) Breakfast. Preparing packed lunch
• About 08.30 Leaving for Leuven (Leuven University College)

➢ Groningen-group: 09.00-10.00 Introduction to the Belgian law governing dismissal and the Belgian labour law (IN DUTCH) by Dr. Annemie Deproft and Jan van Passel.
➢ Other groups: 09.00-10.00 Introduction to “”Social Work and Ethical Problems and Social Work versus sustainability” by Dr Jef Peeters

➢ 10.45-12.00 Visit and guided tour in groups through the Palais de Justice in Brussels (Place Poelaert). Tour starts at 11.00 a.m.
• 1 Tour in German (Cologne and Zurich) Guide is: Rosemary van Peer
• 1 Tour in English (Malaga and a number of students from Germany/Switzerland) Guide is: Annabelle Nuyttens
• 2 Tours in Dutch (Groningen) Guides are: Pieter Fannes and Elisabeth …….
• Costs of the guides are 4 x € 65,- is € 260,- to be payed before.

➢ Groningen-group. 12.00 Return to the Netherlands. Arrival in Groningen is expected at the beginning of the evening.

➢ Cologne-group12.00-14.00 Leisure in Brussels. 14.00 Return to Cologne/Munich

➢ Groups from Tallinn, Zürich and Malaga (from Brussels) 10:25 return to Tallinn (20.03.09)/18:10 return to Zürich (20.03.09)/11:10 return to Malaga (21.03.09)

Annex 1: Comparison Bachelor Courses

I. Student grants and tuition fees
1. Do you receive any study grant? If yes, how much is it ?
2. Is there a difference in receiving a study grant when you are living with your parents or on your own ?
3. What are the costs of the tuition fees for students
4. How much money do you need for books ?
5. Who’s paying your public transportation ?
2. Curriculum
1. What kind of competences should a graduated student have obtained
2. Which extra competences do you need when you are going to work in a foreign country ?
3. Are there possibilities to take classes in social skills/interview skills ?
4. What kind of social competences are most important in your work in your opinion ?
5. How can you become an outstanding or excellent student ?
3. Final Projects
1. What does the last year of your study look like ?
2. Can you choose your own programme in your last year? Which options are offered ?
3. Who will support you in this final year ?
4. How does a final project (= exam project) look like generally
5. Which role do the experiences from your job/internship/student placement play for the final project ?
4. Internship/student placement /work experience
1. In which year and where do you have your work experience? And how long does it last ? Or (part time students): In which company / organization do you build up your work experience?
3. What requirements / competences have to be met in order to do the work ?
4. Which kind of work experience do you have and in what business/ organization?
5. Is it normal that you get financial compensation during your work experience period/student placement ? What is the general height of it ?
5. Work fields of BA’s
1. In which professional field are you likely to work after finishing your Bachelor Course ?
2. In what company/ organizations do you want to find a job once you have graduated ?
3. Do you have any application training how to apply for a job ?
4. Which specializations can you choose within your study ?
5. Who knows what his/her working place will be after his/her study ?

Annex 2: Evaluation Form Programme Brusselsweek 2009

• Tallinn University, Cologne University of Applied Sciences, Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen, Leuven University College, Malaga University, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Munich University of Applied Sciences

We would like to ask you to spend about 10-15 minutes of your time filling out the evaluation form, that you can find below. It is a useful tool for us to improve the quality of the programme of the Brusselsweek Please choose the score according to your opinion of the quality of the issue mentioned.
Please only give the scores for the parts of the programme you took part in. If you did not take part, please cross NP (not participated). 1 is the highest score (“very good”), 5 is the lowest one (“rather bad”). Many thanks in advance.


0 student Cologne 0 student Leuven 0 student Groningen 0 student Tallinn
0 student Malaga 0 student Zurich 0 lecturer Zurich
0 lecturer Leuven 0 lecturer Tallinn 0 lecturer Groningen
0 lecturer Malaga 0 lecturer Cologne/Munich

Evaluation questions
01. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Warm welcome programme Tuesday afternoon
02. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Travelling to Vaalbeek
03. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Staying in Laforesta
04. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Meals in Laforesta
05. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Comparison BA-courses
06. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Lecture Dr. Miel Vervliet/Dr Arnout Justaert
07. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Visit to the city center of Leuven/city walk
08. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Lecture Jean Luc Dehaene
09. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Visit City Center Brussels and social walk
10. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Discussions Members Eur Parliament NL/BE/ESP
11. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Lunch in Restaurant European Union
12. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Party, training, salsa, we and the world
13. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Working in international workshops
14. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Lagerhuis-discussions with Esther de Lange
15. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Evening in Leuven on Thursday
16. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Visit to the Palais de Justice
17. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 General atmospere in the workshopgroups
18. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Socialising of the international students
19. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 General quality programme, introd. & excursions
20. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Usefulness Brusselsweek for education and work
21. 0 NP 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 4 05 Financial costs in relation to what was offered

1. Please calculate your average score (gemiddelde score/Durchschnittsnote) and please fill out this score at the top of the page. Only count the answers with scores, please.
2. Please write at the other side of this evaluation your personal answer to the following two questions: a. What should be changed in the programme b. What should stay the same ?

Annex 3: House of Commons-Discussions

House of Commons Discussion/Lagerhuisdiscussie The (preparation-) group for these debates and discussions consists of 2 students of each university. These students prepare one or two statements per university with clear arguments pro and contra the thesis about a relevant and European (or European Union) topic. The students formulate the statement in clear and correct English and give the pro’s and contra’s in one page for each of the theses. In Brussels the students of the 4 countries (Be/Ge/Est/NL)* introduce these staments one after another and share the handouts with the pro’s and contra’s among the appr. 130 participants. The discussions are lead by Mr Willem van Olst, lecturer from Hanze University Groningen.
– The common language in the House of Commons Discussion is English. If really necessary we will translate and interpret from/to English. As students and lecturers froms Zürich and Malaga are this year our guest and participate for the first time they are invited to take part in the discussion but the need not prepare statements.
– The main theme will be: Labour in Europe, working together and living together. From each of the 4 “old universities” (Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and Estonia) 2 students bring in I or 2 statements with the most important arguments pro and contra in about 1 page per statement. At the beginning of the discussions the students share the handouts with the statements and arguments, introduce the theme and statements and finally come to conclusions. After each discussion Mrs Esther de Lange, member of the European Parliament will comment the discussions and compare them with the real discussions on the issues within the EP. At the end of the session she will award the best debater of each university/country and Mr. Willem van Olst from Hanze University of Groningen will lead the discussion.

Annex 4: Students Workshops and Presentations (14.00-17.00 p.m.)

International students’ workshops
In the Brussels programme on Thursday afternoon the participating students organise international workshops in which students from the six countries (Belgium, Germany, Estonia, Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands) exchange and discuss how the situation looks like in their different countries concerning the themes that were researched. There are 6 themes and 12 groups, so every theme is dealt with in two different groups. If possible it would be nice if in each group at least one student of each country would be present. We will see.
For the workshops, students from the six countries prepare presentations in English of about 15 minutes (per country) with about 10 slides (max), to be shared as hand outs to the participants at the beginning of the workshops. At the start of the workshop the participants shortly choose their chair who will lead the procedure and the discussions. The chosen secretary will summarize the main results on behalf of the group and will present these in the plenary session afterwards.
In their presentations students present the answers they found on the orientation questions. For this they use in their preparation research: documents, internet, interviews, literature, and concrete real life cases. After each country-presentation there are about 5 minutes for specific informative questions, no discussions please. After that all the presentations have been finished in the workshop there is a short break. After this break the students of the workshop discuss the similarities of the results that were presented and the differences and specifically discuss the value of these similarities and differences. The central question then is: what can we learn from each other within Europe ? The main conclusions of each group concern three aspects :
1. what are the most striking differences and similarities between the countries ?
2. what do the members of the workshop think about these similarities and differences ?
3. what can we learn from this and from each other within Europe: what are best practices ?
At the end of the session of the workshops each secretary presents the main conclusions in the plenary meeting of all the 12 workshops. (every theme is dealt with twice/in 2 groups:
• (1) Activation, Reintegration & Municipal Employment Projects
• (2) Wages and Social Benefit Systems versus Activating Welfare State
• (3) Demographic Change: Elderly, Labour and Labour Market
• (4) Equal Chances ? Poverty and Social Exclusion in Europe
• (5) Migrants, Social Cohesion and the Labour Market
• (6) Equal Treatment of Men and Women

The “active welfare state’’ (participation state or activating welfare state) is a hot and important issue on the European agenda. Both capital mobility and production is increasing and so is labour migration. Sectors have temporary and sometimes structural surplus and deficits on the labour market. These so called deficiencies and “lack-professions” are more and more daily news facts. In the reality of a cyclically sensitive labour market in most of the member states reality shows that there is an important “rest group” of citizens who stay on the sideline and for which labour participation is for several reasons difficult or almost impossible (temporary or permanent) . It could have something to do with deprivation, for instance education, knowledge, labour handicap, social thresholds like the care for the children, elderly etc. In a number of cases a combinations of more of these thresholds in a context of underprivilegation combined with marginalisation and social exclusion make the entrance to the labour market rather difficult.

Most of these people receive, dependent on the social allowance and social security systems, a remittance payment (such as unemployment benefit, social assistance, forms of Sickness Act allowances. Beside supporting people for the regular, the competitive labour market, member states look for tailor made solutions , social economy systems, local/municipal services economy, systems of labour care, community services. Due to their entitlement for allowances the recipients of social security benefits are invited or they are obliged to participate. “Everybody Works”: as part of social welfare, a noble aim or rather an expensive utopia ? That is the question in this workshop. Further main questions:

1. Benefits recipients, whatever thresholds may restrict their participation in the competitive labour market, have important competences that are too often unused, because of lack of tailor made work for them. People often point quickly to the benefit recipient and refer to his or her responsibility to adapt to the demands of the labour market. If you in your member state look at this rest group on the one hand and to concrete vacancies on the other, where then do you see causes of unemployment, in the benefit recipients or in the lack of tailor made jobs ?

2. Some benefit recipients have difficult times in their lives. They have personal problems and sometimes they receive help from social work-counsellors or they have a heavy burden to bear within their families. What is your opinion on benefit recipients: should they be activated more or should some people be left alone for a while, because of the situation they are in ? Is activation the first and the best choice ?

3. Which concrete forms of social economy or social and community services and local projects are organised in your member state ? Could you give an example of good practices ? Why do you consider this a good practice ?

4. Some critics claim that many forms of social economy are actually kind of safety-net. From this perspective, rather critical questions are asked whether this kind of initiatives contribute to more social welfare for deprived groups or that these forms of social economy, on the contrary, continue their marginal position and misery. These critics plea for a clear transfer to the regular labour market in stead of sheltered work places. How is this discussion going on in your member state ? What is your own opinion on this ?

5. An initiative in social economy has to be paid anyhow, with public or with private means. Society’s answer could be: tailor made work for deprived groups, supplementary tailor made services…..for persons, for families, for city quarters, more social welfare in the broad sense of the word (social security, social cohesion, social inclusion). Is this sector of social economy in your member state functioning sufficiently and is it sufficiently professional to formulate the (reliable and reasonable priced) answers to social needs ?


If we want to look in a critical way to the components of the activating social welfare state, it is important to have a view on and an insight in income resources: labour or not labour related income and the average price level. We invite the students of this workshop to prepare the workshop by describing the benefits, income and level of the prices in their country. In terms of activation or social welfare state we often speak of labour- unemployment or poverty traps. This workshop is meant for comparing and exchanging benefit systems and for critically reviewing them. We kindly ask the participants from several member states to fill in this scheme as complete as possible.

Income examples
Social assistance allowances in your country Min.unemployment benefit in your country + eriod Max. unem-ployment benefit in your ountry period Average start salary of
a social worker or person-
nel manager in your
Living together with more persons having income Gross/Bruto = …..
Taxes /social security =
Net/Netto = …………
Living as head of family/other members have no income) Gross/Bruto = …..
Taxes /social security
= Net/Netto = …………
Living single Gross/Bruto = …..
Taxes /social security =
Net/Netto = …………
Average child benefit/family allowance in your country
For 1 child, for 2 children, for 3 children
This allowances are given until the age of ….. year
for children/students in my country
When you finish your BA-education in your country can you get unemployment allocation when you do not find a job, if yes how much and how long ? When living together with other persons ? ………
When living alone ? ……….
When you are head of a family ? ……..
Can you find the amount of money that is accepted and defined as a ‘vital social minimum’ for poverty in your country ? When living alone ? …………….
When being head of family ? …………..
Can you find and mention a few indications of average prices in your country ? Student room for rent/ month …………
Price of a normal family house (not in city center
or residential area) ………….
Tuition fees for university (university/one year) ……………………..

Discussion questions for this scheme (workshop 2)
1. Please give some more background information about the social security system in your member state apart from filling in the scheme.
2. Please prepare an instructive explanation for each country in the workshop.
3. If you look at the situation in your country, what are in your opinion the most important strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats ? (contradictions, positive elements etc.) in this field of wages and benefit systems versus activating welfare state.
4. What do you think of the line between “income from benefit systems” versus “income from labour” versus “”costs of life” ? Where are the most important challenges for social policy in your country ?

In many countries of the European Union you can perceive demographic developments, characterised by an increasing aging and greying population. Elderly people get older and less children are born, generally speaking, with differences between EU-member states. The average age is increasing per EU inhabitant. This will have its impact on the labour market and will increase its problems, for instance forms of brain drain and loss of expertise when many employees go in pension and leave their work, because transfer of their work experience and knowledge to young colleagues turns out to be not that easy. As an example: in the Netherlands the number of people above 55 years of age will increase from 2.6 Million in 1975 to 5 million in 2025, according to expectations.
The pressure on the social systems in the EU-member states is heavily increasing, because pensions and other facilities for the elderly have to be paid by the young, according to the so called system of pension re-allocation (repartitie as it is called in Flanders) not to mention care systems that become more and more expensive: higher demands and higher expectations (preferably tailor made) make the costs explode.

5 orientation questions

If we concentrate on the effects of an ageing and greying population on the labour market and the decrease of young people, a number of questions arise for the workshop :

1. Elderly people are no threat for the survival of the welfare state, in contradiction to what is often claimed ! On the contrary: a huge and enormous chance for its existence. In how far do you think this statement is convincing. Please argue !

2. Personnel management for elderly employees has to be changed by employers, companies and institutions in a positive sense: elderly people have become valuable in stead of worthless. Respect and appreciation have to take the place of undervaluation of elderly employees. What is your opinion and what are your arguments ?

3. How could employers anticipate on the ongoing ageing and greying of the population or don’t you think these problems play a central role in your country ?

4. Money gives power ! He who pays, determines. Two slogans that show how important finances are in society, though money alone does not make one happy. It becomes more and more clear that the so called “grey ball” , the elderly in society, have considerable means in terms of money and real estate. Politicians and policymakers cannot neglect the elderly. The question is only: how to find forms and contents for this ? How do people in your country deal with this issue or does not this discussion play an important role ?

5. Regulations and arrangements like pre-pension and taking early retirement disappear even faster than they were introduced. The pension age of 65 is a discussion in many countries. This is a discussion about the basic values of society as it deals with the principles of solidarity. What are your ideas about this ? Which role does this discussion play in your country ?


The existence of poverty is one of the greatest unsolved problems among the social problems of our time. Although the average living standard in Europe is relatively high and secured, at least in comparison with other parts of the world, nonetheless the poverty rate in relation to the overall population has barely changed in the last years. Research results indicate that 16% of the population (that means not less than 80 million persons) live in poverty or are at risk of getting there. We know, however, that there are considerable differences between countries and population groups.
So we have to put the general question how to fight against poverty and social exclusion effectively, knowing that cohesion and social stability in the long run will largely depend on how we succeed in this.

1. Conceptual points: The meaning of poverty and social exclusion
What does poverty and social exclusion mean for you? What is necessary to be considered poor and socially excluded? To what extent has the appreciation of poverty changed in the last years and decades?

2. Facts and figures: poverty and social exclusion in your own country
Which sections of the population are especially affected by poverty and social exclusion? What are the reasons for this – from a historical, sociological, demographical and/or cultural point of view? Look up some meaningful statistics of your country in the internet and compare them with European data or data of other countries.

3. Ideologies: social reactions on poverty and social exclusion
How do people and political institutions deal with the phenomena of poverty and social exclusion? Is there a social debate on that issue? Who is considered to be responsible for poverty and social exclusion? Are the social effects of poverty and social exclusion met by means of control and repression or rather by measures of integration? Which groups receive attention, which are ignored or even frozen out ?

4. Activities against poverty and social exclusion
a) What kind of measures against material poverty (in the sense of basic necessities of life like housing, food, clothing) does, as far as you know, your country apply? Name some organisations of the civil society, that combat material poverty and indicate instruments and approaches they use. Give some examples of good practice.
What is the approach to address the situation of working poor, part-time and casual-job workers in your country?
b) What are – in your view – the most effective approaches to restrain social exclusion in your country? Are there specialized integration programs, pressure groups or lobbies for the encouragement of socially and culturally deprived and excluded sections of the population?
What kind of approaches for better participation and empowerment do you know in regard to children, youth, single parents, ethnical and religious minorities, elderly people a.s.o. How is it possible for them to achieve more attention and respect?

International migration is becoming more and more important. Almost 200 million people live outside the country where they were born . As a result of several coinciding factors, many European member states are confronted with a stream of immigrants. This phenomenon results in an increase of diversity of the inhabitants. Some important questions we have to ask ourselves: ‘How can we hold together our complex and diverse societies?’ or ‘How can we maintain the quality of living together to guard the well being of every individual member of society?’

Give an overview of the facts en figures concerning migrants in your member state: how many new migrants a year, men or women, from which countries, …? What are the main motives for migrants to (im)migrate to your member state? How did these motives change during recent history?

What, in your opinion, is the definition of social cohesion? What’s the difference with integration? What are the inevitable conditions to bring about social cohesion between all members of your country?

What’s the link between integration, social cohesion and economical participation? What’s the policy of your member state to stimulate migrants to participate in labour market?

How do local governments or organisations in your member state try to stimulate active participation and social cohesion between all members? Give an example of a good practice that manages to break down ‘barriers of distrust’ between inhabitants.

How does the government in your member state try to regulate the ability of migrants to participate in social life? Which difficulties do migrants meet concerning the legal rules of migration and participation? How do non governmental organisations influence / enforce this legislation?


1. UNEQUAL TREATMENT: What are in your opinion the main areas of life where you (still) find examples of Unequal Treatment of Men and Women ? Please mention the areas and give the examples (please mention al least 3 areas with examples) . What is your opinion on these examples ?

2. EU SUPPORT AND CHALLENGE: Which examples (at least 5) could you mention of concrete EU-support for equal treatment of Men and Women (directives, judgements of the European Court of Justice, actions, programmes etc). What should the EU do more in this direction ?

3. ACTIVISTS FOR EQUAL TREATMENT MEN AND WOMEN IN YOUR COUNTRY: What is the role of the government, the political parties, trade unions, employers organisations, feminist movement etc in your country in fighting for Equal Treatment of Men and Women, with which strategy and with which effects ?

4. GENDER PAY GAP: Please see: http://www.ituc-csi.org/IMG/pdf/gap-1.pd… and comment on this report, on the gender pay gap in your country and please formulate your 5 main conclusions

5. EQUAL TREATMENT OF MEN/WOMEN UNIVERSITY AND FIELD: What is your idea about the Equal Treatment of Men and Women in both your university and in the field of Personnel Management/Human Resource Management and/or the field of Social Work and Applied Psychology. Please consider both “ist” (the way it is now) and “soll” (how it should be)


Human Rights Violations After 9/11 and the Role of Constitutional Constraints


The Graduate Forum and the Harvard European Law Association

have the pleasure to invite you to a talk on

Human Rights Violations After 9/11 and the Role of

Constitutional Constraints

After 9/11, the United States and its allies took measures to protect their citizens from future terrorist attacks. While these measures aim to increase security, they have often been criticized for violating human rights. But violating rights is difficult in a constitutional democracy with separated powers and checks and balances. Veto players in the legislative branch (majoritarian checks) may veto rights violations that go against the wishes of the majority of people. And judicial review by an independent court (counter-majoritarian checks) may result in the invalidation of counter-terrorism measures that are in violation of a country’s pre-commitments to human rights, regardless of the wishes of the majority. We use difference-in-difference estimation for 152 countries between 1978 and 2006 to test whether 9/11 has led to an increase in rights violations in US ally countries and whether this effect depends on a country’s checks and balances. We find that 9/11 has led to a systematic increase in human rights violations in US ally countries. This effect was significantly smaller in countries with independent judicial review, but did not depend on the presence of veto players in the legislative branch.

Mila Versteeg LL.M. ’07
Doctoral Candidate, Oxford University

Date and Time: Thursday,April 9th, 3:00-4:00pm
Place: Hauser 103
Refreshments will be served!
For any questions please contact Ermal Frasheri at efrasheri@law.harvard.edu, or Yun-Ru Chen at ychen@law.harvard.edu
We hope to see many of you at the event!

“The Role of Transatlantic Cooperation in Financial Markets Reform”


Monday, April 6, 2009
“The Role of Transatlantic Cooperation in Financial Markets Reform”
Jörgen Holmquist, Director General of the Internal Market and Services of
the European Commission

12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street, Room K 401

Transatlantic Relations Seminar co-sponsored by the Center for European
Studies, supported by the Nicolas Janssen Family Fund
Contact: Karl Kaiser  kkaiser at wcfia.harvard.edu; Richard Cooper,
 rcooper at fas.harvard.edu

A light snack will be served at noon.

Prof. Furio Cerutti, Dr. Sonia Lucarelli


The Harvard European Law Association invites you to a talk given by

Prof. Furio Cerutti – Professor of Political Philosophy, University of Florence and

Dr. Sonia Lucarelli – Senior Researcher and Lecturer, University of Bologna

“The Problematic Legitimacyof the European Union”

Thursday, April 2., 12.00 – 1.15, Areeda 120

Pizza and drinks will be served

The question of legitimacy of a legal system is one of the most challenging legal and philosophical questions. Even more so in a case of a specific and complex legal structure as the European Union. Come hear our speakers talk about the legitimacy of the EU and about the role of the external image of the Union in the internal legitimacy build-up.

The speakers are co-authors of the book: The Search for a European Identity – Values, Policies and Legitimacy of the European Union. The book is available in widener library!

Sieglinde E. Pommer: Multilingual Law: On the Role of Translation in EU Legal Discourse


Harvard European Law Association invites you to

a talk given by the

Secretary-General of the European Society of Translation Studies, currently Post-doc Fellow at HLS,

Sieglinde E. Pommer


Multilingual Law:

On the Role of Translation in EU Legal Discourse


Wednesday, March 11, 12.30, room to be announced

Refreshments – lunch will be served

DDr. Pommer, LL.M.

William Valasidis Substantive and procedural challenges for the European Court of Justice in the post-enlargement era – Time Change, Room


Harvard European Law Association invites you to
a talk given by
the senior legal secretary (référandaire) of the President of the European Court of Justice
Mr. William Valasidis
Substantive and procedural challenges for the European Court of Justice in the post-enlargement era
(Delimiting EU Competences in the Criminal Law Area – Urgent Premininary Reference Procedure Striking a balance between multiligualism and efficiency)
Thursday, February 26, 1.15-2.15., Pound 332
Refreshments – lunch will be served
Mr. Valasidis knows the ins and outs of the European Court of Justice and he may also answer other questions you may have on the ECJ.