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Chapter

12. Employment Policy  

Between Efficacy and Experimentation

Martin Rhodes

This chapter focuses on the European Union’s employment policy, which is currently formulated and implemented via several parallel modes of policy-making, including the standard Community method of legislating and a softer mode of policy-making and innovation via the European Employment Strategy (EES). The chapter begins with a discussion of the three modes of policy-making and governance in European employment policy that have been developed since the 1960s: the mode of legislated ‘rights’, based on the classical Community method; the mode of ‘law via collective agreement’; and a ‘new’ mode of governance, using the open method of coordination. It then considers employment policy-making before the Treaty of Amsterdam and employment policy innovations post-Amsterdam. It also examines social and employment vs economic rights in EU law and concludes with an assessment of future prospects for EU employment policy.