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Board-level Representation

UK employees have no statutory right to representation at board level and, with a tiny handful of exceptions, this has also been the case in practice.

In the UK there is no general right for any employee representatives to participate at board level. The handful of experiments with employee representatives at board level in state-owned companies in the 1970s ended with the election of a Conservative government in 1979. Since then there have been a very few examples where employee representatives have been present at board level, generally in companies which were either employee or publicly-owned, but these are very much the exception. The transport company First Group PLC, which began as a municipally-owned bus company, has an employee director, although the individual is elected by the shareholders, rather than the employees.1

However, there are now at least three UK employees who are on the supervisory boards of European Companies.

L. Fulton (2013) Worker representation in Europe. Labour Research Department and ETUI. Produced with the assistance of the SEEurope Network, online publication available at http://www.worker-participation.eu/National-Industrial-Relations.