La mutazione genetica del diritto del lavoro
WP C.S.D.L.E. “Massimo D’Antona”.IT – 322/2017
Questo saggio è la rielaborazione della Relazione da me tenuta a Napoli nell’ottobre 2015 nel Convegno Diritto del lavoro. Politiche e tecniche normative. Il testo è stato pubblicato in M.P. Iadicicco, V. Nuzzo (a cura di), Le riforme del diritto del lavoro. Politiche e tecniche normative, Quaderni della Rivista Diritti Lavori e Mercati, 2/2016, Editoriale Scientifica, Napoli.
The essay analyzes the economic dimension of the Labour contract and points out that the development of Labour law has been finalized for years to reducing this economic character of Labour relationships, enhancing the individual and collective rights of the workers. Since the eighties the situation has radically changed. As a consequence of many different factors (globalization, neoliberism, policies adopted by the European Union, the diffusion of a “single economic thought” which maintains that Labour Law is a tool of political economy and that the reduction of the worker’s rights is essential to increase the competitiveness of the economy), Labour Law has changed its DNA. From a juridical matter finalized to defending and increasing the powers and the rights of workers, it has become a technical instrument to guarantee the competitiveness of the economy and to reach some targets, like the increase in employment levels, the organizational efficiency of companies, the growth in productivity etc. These radical modifications threaten the scientific status of Labour Law and determine an epistemological crisis of the matter, which has been “colonized” by the Economy in methods of analysis, targets and instruments of investigation. The essay concludes with an examination of the specific characteristics of Labour Law from an axiological point of view and maintains that the national and EU constitutional principles impede this juridical matter from “dissolving” into the targets and methodology of Economics. Labour Law scholars must defend the epistemological status of this matter, reaffirming its values and its main targets (to protect workers in Labour relationships and in the market) and avoiding that the employee could be considered a “commodity”, according to the famous Philadelphia statement (“Labour is not a commodity”).