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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 2.123

Labour solidarity in the transnational regime of posted work


  • Dr. Anna MATYSKA

Primary authors

  • Dr. Anna MATYSKA (KU Leuven, Interculturalism, Migration and Minorities Research Centre (IMMRC))


Transantionalization of labour and capital increasingly demands to look at the nascent and processes of labour solidarity across borders, in mobile and multi-anchored spaces. This paper seeks to understand labour solidarity as it unfolds in the context of posted work mobility regime. Posted work is one of the flagship and more controversial projects of European integration. It involves the transnational subcontracting of foreign labour for short-term projects under the provision of service and is often associated with social dumping and precariousness. I ask how posted work, as a particular type of mobility and employment regime, affects labour solidarity among Polish mobile workers in the construction sector. I look at the organized and informal forms of labour solidarity “on the move”. In particular, I focus on the genealogy of labour lawsuit that Polish posted workers initiated, with the support of Finnish trade union, against their Polish employer who posted them to Finland, and which reached the European Union Court of Justice. I discuss what sort of solidarity-making efforts and employment circumstances brought about the lawsuit and the principles that grounded the division between the workers who joined the lawsuit and those who decided to stay silent. I will indicate what these divisions mean for the possibilities of labour solidarity “on the move” to emerge and what its institutional contingencies and impact are. I built my argument on multi-sited fieldwork, including interviews and participant observation, conducted among Polish posted workers in Scandinavia and Belgium in 2014-2018.