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Video: Social dialogue and cooperation at the municipal level pays off - the Norwegian experience

31 August, 2015

Cooperation pays off

PSI affiliate the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees (Fagforbundet) has produced a new video on how decent work and tripartite cooperation created the foundation for the Norwegian welfare state.

Norway is the only Nordic country that has brought the model of tripartite cooperation to the municipal level. Tripartite cooperation can be used to overcome challenges in the municipality, as the three partners: politicians, administrative leaders and employees represent the key stakeholders in the municipal organisation.

A close dialogue between the tripartite group and other members of local society is not only a powerful tool for solving problems, but also useful for sharing new ideas.

One of the examples in the video is from Sogndalen municipality in southern Norway, where tripartite cooperation has been used to increase the number of jobs in the health sector. Through tripartite cooperation many small, part-time positions have been replaced by full-time positions. The positive results include better services for patients, money saved on administration and better working conditions for the employees.

Another example is Vefs municipality in northern Norway, where tripartite dialogue has been used to reduce sick-leave. As a result, 17 more people are at work every day.

The Norwegian model of tripartite cooperation is based on a democratic tradition of shared power and responsibility. Working together to solve problems of mutual interest is regarded as a fruitful strategy for both employers and employees. Building trust through social dialogue has helped to develop Norwegian society.

During the last ten years, the Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation has organised two large programmes in which hundreds of municipalities have resolved local challenges through tripartite cooperation. The current programme is called «Together for a better municipality».

More information on Fagforbundet website: https://www.fagforbundet.no/

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