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What is flexicurity?

Flexicurity is an integrated strategy for enhancing, at the same time, flexibility and security in the labour market. It attempts to reconcile employers' need for a flexible workforce with workers' need for security – confidence that they will not face long periods of unemployment.

What is the EU doing?

Common principles of flexicurity

Working with national governments, social partners and academics the EU has identified a set of common flexicurity principles and is exploring how countries can implement them through four components:

  • flexible and reliable contractual arrangements
  • comprehensive lifelong learning strategies
  • effective active labour market policies
  • modern social security systems

Communication of the Commission on the common principles of flexicurity (June 2007)

Council conclusions on the common principles of flexicurity (November 2007)

In the European Employment Strategy

Flexicurity is a crucial element of the Employment Guidelines and the European Employment Strategy as a whole. Integrated flexicurity policies play a key role in modernising labour markets and contributing to the achievement of the 75% employment rate target set by the Europe 2020 Strategy.

Measures taken or initiated in this context include:

  • Agenda for new skills and jobs: for reducing segmentation and supporting transitions by strengthening the flexicurity components and implementation; equipping people with the right skills for employment; improving job quality and the working conditions; and supporting job creation
  • New skills for new jobs: for upgrading, anticipating and better matching  skills and jobs
  • Youth on the Move: to help young people acquire skills, qualifications and experience
  • anticipating, preparing and managing company restructuring
  • strengthening public employment services such as job search support, career analyses, validation of experience, etc.

Promoting flexicurity at national level

Under the initiative "Mission for Flexicurity", EU representatives, together with the social partners visited 5 EU countries and discussed with them how they have been setting up and implementing flexicurity policies.