The Final Conference for the Varieties of Industrial Relations in Aviation Lockdown (VIRAL) project will take place in Brussels, on June 8th 2023. Dr David Mangan and Prof Michael Doherty have conducted the research for the Irish study, and have jointly led a work package on the project.
The conference will be held at the European Economic and Social Rights (EESC) Building, and can be viewed on a livestream: see https://viralproject.eu/.
The VIRAL project (funded by the DG Employment of the European Commission), studied the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on industrial relations, collective bargaining, employment levels and working conditions in the air transport sector. The project examined the different measures and approaches undertaken by the EU, and by national governments in the seven partner countries (Denmark, Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Ireland and Poland). It assessed the short-term (during the lockdown itself) and long-term (post-lockdown; or at least, up to the current period of air traffic recovery) impacts of these measures on the sector from an interdisciplinary perspective (economic, socio-legal, and industrial relations).
The project assessed the role of the various national industrial relations/collective bargaining systems in mitigating the short-term effects of COVID-19, and speculated on how the sector might meet upcoming challenges (e.g. those of global competition and sustainability) based on the lessons learned from the lockdown-period.
This research was particularly interested in the contribution of industrial relations and social dialogue (if any) to the post-COVID-19 recovery and restructuring of the air transport sector within the framework of European social and environmental sustainable goals , and in the role of the State/ Legislature in supporting the recovery and reorganisation of the sector.