Tuesday, January 21, 2014



IWS Documented News Service


Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau



European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Dublin Foundation)

European Monitoring Centre on Change (EMCC)




Online retailer Amazon has tripled its global workforce in the last three years. It is now by some estimates the biggest 'tech' firm in the world in terms of employment with over 100,000 workers. Recent European expansion cases will bring over 6,000 new permanent jobs in coming years to 'fulfilment centres' (distribution warehouses) in the Czech Republic and Poland.

The company’s European expansion has not been without problems, however, with questions over the quality of jobs provided at the American company. Negative coverage of work practices in the UK and industrial disputes in Germany over pay and collective agreement coverage has put a question mark over the company’s image as a good employer. 

The rapid expansion of Amazon has also been a challenge to the traditional retail sector in Europe with recent closures of HMV, Comet and Media-Saturn attributable at least in part to price competition from the American giant. In the long-term it remains to be seen whether Amazon’s massive gamble on their dominance of future retail online is successful. In the short-term, more high-street shops are likely to disappear.

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This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.



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