Value of Social Dialogue

By April 12, 2018Guide, Social dialogue

Social dialogue for the improvement of global working conditions

Social dialogue. A concept with a seemingly simple meaning: to talk to each other A constructive social dialogue is an essential tool for improvements where work and income are concerned. During the last 50 years, CNV Internationaal and its trade union partners learned important lessons on social dialogue.

In the Netherlands we know the ‘polder model’ or ‘consensus decision-making’. Trade unions, employers and often the government as well, reach agreements about employment conditions, working conditions and workers’ rights through social dialogue. Despite the fact that this is not always easy, not even in the Netherlands, we realise that constructive dialogue is an important tool for sustainable improvements and development. The Netherlands has proper procedures in place for this type of dialogue. This is not always the case in other countries. This is concerning to me and CNV Internationaal. Social dialogue is part of CNV’s DNA. Our Christian and social principles mean that we are committed to treat each other with respect. Social dialogue has the same intention. It means that nobody should be excluded (inclusivity) and that we cooperate in finding solutions. This is a prime example of the way in which CNV Internationaal is socially engaged and achieves results.

This booklet outlines how and why social dialogue works. It gives examples of best practice from our trade union partners. The basic idea of social dialogue is that the parties reach a consensus. However difficult this may be at times. As far as we are concerned, this is the only sustainable way of improving working conditions worldwide.

Pieter de Vente,
Chairman CNV Internationaal
General secretary CNV Vakcentrale
(National Christian Confederation of Trade Unions in the Netherlands)