(02 April 2015) – The European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) recently published the 2014 edition of the European Restructuring Monitor (ERM), which explores restructuring in the public sector in Europe since the 2008 financial crisis.
In the immediate aftermath of the recession in 2008, employment in the public sector continued to grow, helping to sustain demand in the European economy. However, by 2010, significant restructuring was underway in the public sector in several Member States.
In contrast to restructuring in the private sector, public sector restructuring affects much of the population, and so generates a great deal of political interest and some controversy.
This report provides an overview of restructuring trends in Member States since the onset of the recession in 2008. One of the characteristics of the recession was that, even if employment in the public sector helped to cushion the initial macroeconomic shock, the public sector subsequently experienced the most severe restructuring in Europe for many decades.
This was, of course, due to the spiralling public debt in many Member States, largely due to the banking crisis, and issues related to the governance of a then fragile euro.