Strasbourg, 26 May 2015






on the Revision of the CoE's Strategy on social cohesion........5



Rethinking the CoE Strategy on social cohesion

in the conditions of global changes of development's architecture10


comprehensive new and consensual instrument for

measurement of social progress, well-being, social cohesion

for mitigation of circumstances of economic crisis

and tackling the recent  economic downturn..............15









Dear members of the CDDECS,

With apologies for the delay please find attached reply from Russian Federation on the Questionnaire on the Revision of the CoE's Strategy on social cohesion.

 The Russian Federation will be grateful for including national reply in the following documents – CDDECS (2015)8 (Compilation) and CDDECS (2015)9 (Summary) with the relevant Appendix (see: attached file).

 Thank you in advance.


Dear Chairperson,

Dear Vice-chair 

Dear Secretariat,

Dear members of CDDECS,

We kindly ask you to include in the preliminary panel of nominees in the Bureau of the CDDECS the candidacy of the Russian Federation for the next term period.

We would be grateful for you to maintain our candidacy in the forthcoming election in the Bureau, which will be held at the end of the first day of the 3rd plenary meeting.

The activity of the CDDECS is extremely important for us.

In the course of last year and during the half of this year the Russian Federation paid a considerable attention to the social cohesion issues in the framework of CDDECS and in our

cooperation in the international panel discussions.

1. The high official representatives from the Ministry of Labour and social protection of the Russian Federation in close cooperation with and coordination by the Ministry of Foreign

Affairs  participated in Council of Europe Conference on the implementation of the Strategy and Action Plan for Social Cohesion in member states under the aegis of the Council of

Europe Committee of Ministers Chairmanship of The Republic of Azerbaijan (May - November 2014) - "Social cohesion and challenges in times of crises" (Baku, 10-11 September

2014). Russian representatives made a key note ("Diversity in European societies - presentation of the progress review on the Council of Europe contribution to social cohesion in

Europe") and a presentation on the current situation of the protection of social rights in our country (see:

2. First Deputy Minister of Labour and Social protection of the Russian Federation

Sergey F. Vel'myaikin and Deputy Director of Legal and International Affairs of the same Ministry E.Vokach-Boldyreva took part in the Ministerial session of the High-Level Conference

on the European Charter under the Italian Chairmanship in the European Union (Turin, 17-18 October 2014). He made a short report "The Role of the European Social Charter in the

consolidation of social rights during the period of crisis and at the recovery stage" (see: General Report Appendix 2i -

4. The Russian Federation also took part in the High-Level Conference"The future of the protection of social rights in Europe" under the Belgian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe (Brussels, 12-13 February 2015).

5. In the line with the activity of the CDDECS' Working Group "B" on review of the Social Cohesion Strategy and Action Plan and for the 3rd Bureau meeting in Paris (19-20 February,

2015) Russian representative (the member of this WG and the member of the CDDECS and Bureau) prepared  Concept paper on the rethinking of the CoE Strategy on social cohesion in

the conditions of global changes of development's architecture (see: attached file) and the relevant comprehensive analyses of global process of the elaboration of adaptable

comprehensive new and consensual  instrument for measurement of social progress, well-being, social cohesion for mitigation of circumstances of economic crisis and tackling the recent
economic downturn (see: attached file TABLE).

6. Regarding to the First Report by the Secretary General of the Council of Europe “State of Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law in Europe: An analysis, based on the findings of the CoE monitoring mechanisms and bodies», which was presented in the course of the 124th Session of the Committee of Ministers (Vienna, 5-6 May 2014), Russian representative presented at the 2nd plenary meeting of the CDDECS The statement of the delegation of the Russian Federation, which was included by the Secretariat in the Full report of the 2nd plenary meeting of CDDECS (see: CDDECS (2014) RAP 4 final - pages 48-50 Appendix 4 (

5. With respect to the activity of the Committee of Experts on the Council of Europe strategy for the rights of the child 2016-19 (DECS-ENF) Mr. Pavel Astakhov, Children’s Rights Commissioner for the President of Russia, upon invitation of the Russian delegation, participated in the meeting of the CDDECS and made a short presentation on the Russia’s National Strategy on integrating efforts of family, society and State for the purposes of child welfare, in which he summarized recent improvements with regard children in institutions, orphans, adoptive families, social programs in Russia.
We are grateful for the publication by the Secretariat of this presentation "Integrating efforts of family, society and State for the purposes of child welfare: Russia’s National Strategy", including it in the Full report of the 2nd plenary meeting of the CDDECS  (see: CDDECS (2014) RAP 4 final - pages 51-61; Appendix 5 (

 6. Russian Parliament (State Duma) in cooperation with the The Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of the Russian Federation and The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of RF held the

Hearings “The implementation of the relevant provisions of the European Social Charter, which were ratified by the Russian Federation, and the perspective of the ratification of

additional standards” (Moscow, 10 April).

 7. In the context of the Russian Health and Safety week The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of the Russian Federation in cooperation with the Health and Safety Association

“ETALON” held a Third Congress of occupational health and safety specialists (Sochi, Russian Federation, 13-17 April, 2015). During the congress, on 14 April, Mr Regis Brillat,

Executive Secretary of the European Committee of Social Rights, made a presentation on Article 3 of the European Social Charter on the right to safe and healthy working conditions.

 8. The Union of social workers (the president of “SOPIR” and the president of The Conference of NGO to the Council of Europe Antonina Dashkina) will organize Eurasian forum

“Transforming the society: new approaches and models of advanced development” (Yakutsk, Russian Federation, 8-10 June).


Dear colleagues !

 I will be glad to see you next week!

 Kindest regards,

 Maria Oreshina (MFA, Russian Federation)





1. Do you think it useful at this stage to revise the Council of Europe’s Social Cohesion Strategy of 2010? - YES

Over the past six years after the first Ministerial Conference of the Council of Europe, responsible for social cohesion (Moscow, 2009) the world has undergone dramatic social and political changes which have removed social cohesion by the wayside.

As we see Member States were focused on overcoming financial and economic crisis and resolving political issues, that certainly affected socio-economic situation inside many Member States of the Council of Europe. In this respect, the rethinking and the preparation of the preliminary draft Strategy on social cohesion will be quite appropriate on this stage of the activity of the CoE, taking into account the main global tendencies in the process of rethinking / social progress / well-being / social cohesion / social dialogue / social European model with the broad international experience (UN DESA, UNDP, ILO, Center of well-being, OECD, European Union, Eurofund, The World Bank, EBRD). (See: attached file –
Appendix 1).

It is necessary to underline, that each member States of The Council of Europe should be fully involved and associated with the work at the preparation of the preliminary draft on social cohesion at the early stage. We need to make vitally important and long-lasting document, which should not be a profanation or a stillborn and the abortive strategy.


2. The revised Strategy will continue to be based on the four guiding principles defined by the New Strategy of 2010, namely: / reinvesting in social rights and a cohesive society; building a Europe of responsibilities that are both shared and social; strengthening representation and democratic decision-making and expanding social dialogue and civic engagement; building a secure future for all? – YES with additional one


We consider useful to organise in-depth intergovernmental discussion on possible guiding principles for the revised Strategy taking in consideration, in particular, the consequences of World economic crisis to Europe.

At the same time we can maintain the four guiding principles defined by the New Strategy of 2010, namely: 

propose some pillars with refinements and additions to certain principles, updating them to day-to-day realities, UN Millennium Development Goals by the target date of 2015 and the future.



3. The revised Strategy will affirm an explicit link with the Turin Process and the European Social Charter, social rights, civil rights and the issue of the effectiveness of rights being central to the achievement of social cohesion?  - YES, but with some reservations


It seems premature at this stage to discuss the possibility of making an explicit link of the revised Strategy with the Turin Process (the High-level conference on the European Social Charter in Turin (18-20 October 2014) taking into account that there is no for the moment common definition of the Turin Process agreed upon in the intergovernmental format. At the same time it seems logical to continue to be guided by the logic of the current version of the Strategy in the following aspect – namely, when the Strategy does not refer to the issues of the effectiveness of rights as to the central to the achievement of social cohesion. Therefore we understand that the basis for policies aimed to promotion social cohesion is much wider than the European Social Charter and the issues of rights.

It would be wise to pay more attention on the indication of the challenges, facing the CoE member States from time to time. First of all,  it deals with the fact, that not all CoE member States are legally bounded by the Revised Charter as the contemporary perception of social rights and by the implementation of the full range of provisions of this instrument, even by the outstanding provisions as a core of the Charter – the articles on the right to work, the right to organise, the right to bargain collectively, the right of children and young persons to protection, the right to social security, the right to social and medical assistance, the right of the family to protection, the right of migrant workers and their families to protection and assistance and the right to equal opportunities and equal treatment in matters of employment and occupation.

For instance, the Russian Federation accepted several articles and among them: Article 1 (The right to work); Article 2 (The right to just conditions of work); Article 3 (The right to safe and healthy working conditions); Article 4 (The right to a fair remuneration); Article 5 (The right to organise) Article 6 (The right to bargain collectively), Article 9 (The right to vocational guidance); Article 10 (The right to vocational training); Article 11 (The right to protection of health); Article 12 (The right to social security), Article 14 (The right to benefit from social welfare services); Article 15 (The right of persons with disabilities to independence, social integration and participation in the life of the community); Article 18 (The right to engage in a gainful occupation in the territory of other Parties); Article 20 (The right to equal opportunities and equal treatment in matters of employment and occupation without discrimination on the grounds of sex); Article 21 (The right to information and consultation); Article 22 (The right to take part in the determination and improvement of the working conditions and working environment); Article 24 (The right to protection in cases of termination of employment); Article 28 (The right of workers' representatives to protection in the undertaking and facilities to be accorded to them) and Article 29 (The right to information and consultation in collective redundancy procedures).

We attract The CoE member States' attention to the fact, that on this stage the launching of “Turin process” has only expert's dimension. There is no any agreed declaration or recommendation, coherent or harmonized approach or any other commitment on intergovernmental level. It's still the vision of the expert community. Dealing with the Charter, “Turin process” is only one segment of social reality, which exclude other more broad issues of social agenda.


4. The revised Strategy will be able to rely on the assistance of the Council of Europe Development Bank – YES


CEB is a multilateral bank with a unique social vocation. The CEB is tasked to contribute to the social cohesion and sustainable social development of its 41 member states, who are also its shareholders and all potential countries of operation across Europe. The Russian Federation underline the CEB’s overall contribution to socially and environmentally sustainable development and support the activity of the Council of Europe Development Bank in it's four sectoral lines of action: 1) strengthening social integration; 2) managing the environment; 3) supporting public infrastructure with a social vocation; 4) supporting micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). Nevertheless, The Russian Federation is not CEB's stakeholder and  our State is not bounding by any obligations with CEB. 


5. The Strategy will be a mere updating of the previous strategy (updating of the 2010 Strategy and the Action Plan) – NO


6. OR the Strategy will undergo comprehensive revision (complete rewriting of the 2010 Strategy and the Action Plan) bringing it into line with the timetable of the strategies that already exist or are being drawn up by the subordinate committees


If we support this approach, we should understand, that this way is very expensive in line with the time, which we are able to spend on the realisation of it, and in line with our joint efforts. We should discuss the challenges in the sphere of social policy to which member countries are confronted, try to find common approaches and formulate consensual positions which could become elements of the future Strategy. Also we should take into account the consequences of the World economic crisis to Europe and if the current Strategy helped in addressing them. Attention should be paid in the new Strategy to the effective ways of promotion of social and economic development in Member States.

What we are pursuing, when we are thinking about the inclusion of the timetable strategies of CDDECS' subordinate committees, namely: Gender equality commission (DECS-GEC), Committee of Experts on the CoE Strategy for the rights of the child 2016-2019 (DECS-ENF), Committee of Experts on the rights of people with disabilities (DECS-RPD)? Would it be quite formalistic way to mechanically include some elements of their documents in the Strategy in order to “artificially bind and integrate” them in our Strategy to underline and to emphasize their “viability” or may be “survivability” inside the CDDECS? In this manner we are trying to respond to the question, which was raised during the recent Bureau meeting in Paris (19-20 February) and which was reflected in the concept note on the revision of The CoE Strategy on social cohesion, namely: Although the sub-committees on “Children”, “Disability” and “Women” are in theory subordinate to it, they enjoy de facto independence and their activities are seen more as being “complementary” or “subsidiary” to those of the Steering Committee, which is still presented on the Council website on the same footing as its subordinate bodies”. 

On the other hand, it would be extremely useful to integrate, but very attentively and skillfully, some ideas from another potentially important documents of international organisations, which directly relates to the activity of the CDDECS mostly to the social cohesion problematic (see: attached file – Appendix 1). 


7. The revised Strategy will be a short and precise policy document focused on a few major priorities for action, and will express member states’ commitment YES


In any case the revised Strategy should be the product of the CoE member states' consensus.

In needs to be mentioned the following priorities for action:


8. The revised Strategy will have a tangible link up with the European Union’s Europe 2020 Strategy?  – ?


We should bear in mind that only 28 member states of the Council of Europe (of 47) are also members of the European Union. Therefore it needs to be underlined, that on the preparatory stage of rethinking of the CoE Strategy on social cohesion the rights of the CoE Member States, which are not members of the EU, must be taken into account.


9. Evaluation of the SPIRAL process will be carried out and included in the revised Strategy?  – YES


The issue of social cohesion in Russia is indeed very relevant. Russia is a big and therefore very differentiated in many ways country. The disparity in regional development, as well as quite a large gap in income levels between 10% of the least well-off and 10% of the most wealthy Russians are obstacles to the formation of social cohesion. Therefore, efforts to promote the Action Plan began immediately in the regions of the Russian Federation. Pilot region for its implementation in Russia became Ulyanovsk region. The result of the work was the establishment of the Department of Social Cohesion at the Ministry of Labour and Social Development of the Ulyanovsk region, as well as the approval of the "road map" for the development of social cohesion. The accent has been made on the work with the less protected strata of society. The primary database reflected the main problems of vulnerable groups of population. There had been decided to pay attention on such problems as exclusion, neglect and abandon of the elderly generation, unhealthy way of life, generation gap, lack of common actions for the families, youth and kids, not sufficient cultural level, loss of own historical roots, social abandon of children, especially from the groups of risk. Here are the examples of the actions, conducted in different municipal districts. Considerable interest in the project was shown by representatives of many other regions.

The fact that the Action Plan and the Strategy are being implemented at the regional level gives the reason to believe that it will be based on local features and, therefore, will take into account the specific interests of citizens.

We support the idea of making of evaluation of the SPIRAL process. Following such an evaluation it would be possible then to decide if it should be included into revised Strategy.

10. The Strategy will cover a five-year period – YES


We could take into consideration the factor of the frequency of strategy review.

A five-year period for a Strategy is a normal period for progress reporting mechanism.

But at the same time we have an alternative way. It may be, for instance, ten-year period, like The Lisbon Strategy for growth and employment of the EU, just for scheme of action. But in this case it would be wise to think about the progress reporting mechanism of the implementation of the revised Strategy on social cohesion of the CoE. It need to be taken on the board the existing experience of the previous Strategy of EU, if we need it. The process for the carrying out an independent review assumed the contribution to the mid-term review and for about six meetings of High Level Group, chaired high-level representative of one of the EU state, presenting the report to the European Commission. It was The Netherlands. Or the new Strategy of the EU – “Europe 2020”.  [See: Facing the challenge: The Lisbon strategy for growth and employment. Report from the High Level Group chaired by Wim Kok. November 2004 // ]


11. The revised Strategy will be the subject of a communication policy put in place at the highest level  – YES, but with some clarifications


It is not clear here who should be responsible for the “communication policy put in place at the highest level” – Secretariat or member states?

We propose to reword this question, adding the phrase “at the possible highest level”.

Nevertheless, we should think in general about the reporting format of the activity of CDDECS, regarding social cohesion issues (see points 11, 12, 13).

How to react – to combine all these points or to select one or two of them, but not all.


We believe that the exchange of views on the updated Strategy is adequate to the level of working groups and committees. Preliminary results and the results of the updated Strategy is appropriate to discuss at the conference of Ministers, responsible for social cohesion.



12. The revised Strategy will be the subject of an annual progress report to the Committee of Ministers drawn up by the CDDECS on the basis of member states’ contributions?  – NO

This question presuppose to create one more monitoring body, like European Committee on Social rights, for The European Social Charter, – The CDDECS for the indication of the progress in the implementation of The CoE Strategy on social cohesion. The scheme is the same one.

Taking into account the lack of resources of CDDECS on this stage it would be quite problematic to realise this approach. Social Cohesion is such a complex process that cannot be achieved by one year. In practical dimension the quality of such progress reports of the member states' will be quite poor, if not formalistic.

At the present stage we are not ready to support the idea of creating an additional monitoring mechanism of the Council of Europe in this sphere. So it seems unreasonable to make annual reports to the Committee of Ministers indicating just some new laws adopted or some changeable statistic data.

More rational to make one interim analysis and the final evaluation report of implementation of the Strategy.

Questions of the implementation of the revised Strategy could be discussed during the process of its elaboration.


13. A ministerial conference to take stock of implementation of the revised Strategy will be held at the beginning, halfway stage and end of the Strategy - ?

The question is worded poorly, if not a little bit strange.

The answer on this question depends on our answer, regarding to the frequency of strategy review. This question is about the Strategy, which could be adopted for a long-term period (for example, for ten-year period), because it presuppose three ministerial conferences on social cohesion issues. In five-years period it is impossible, if not unwise and unreasonable, to held it.

At the same time the formulation of this last question in not corresponded with one of the main “argument” of the authors of the concept note on the revising the CoE Strategy on social cohesion, who tries to convince CDDECS' members in the fact, that according to point 1.2. “The Strategy no longer seems to be in the forefront of the Council’s declared priorities and its political message has not been spread widely in the member states”. Particularly, we are talking about the following “argument” - A lack of mobilisation on the part of the ministers responsible for social cohesion at the second ministerial conference in Istanbul in October 2012”. This argument is banal, if not seek.


Conceptual paper

Rethinking the CoE Strategy on social cohesion in the conditions
of global changes of development's architecture


Instead of preface:

Global shifts in understanding of social cohesion through social transformation

In the process of economies opening up to global factor movements, trade and technology, which led to the reallocation resources between and within countries, and driving the expansion of some sectors and the contraction of others, in the conditions of employment challenges, high food prices, pollution, depletion of environment, the intensification of the pace of urbanization and South-South migratory flows we are faced with key challenges.

1.     Austerity measures

1.1. We should recognize, that austerity measures converged into budgetary cuts were the most immediate response on the recent downturn. Many experts on international level tacitly asks for themselves – is it the only way out or the only true solution to mitigate the impact of the crisis on the situation.

2.1. Public spending cuts, reducing support and services, cut funds for social programs is the price for the economic crisis.

  1.     The crisis is a real social drama, which needs in analyzing through the impact of cut policy on specific (vulnerable) groups (elderly, unemployed young people, adults unemployed, women, single mothers, homeless, migrants, refugees, etc.). Another words any decrease  in social protection needs a justification.
  2.     Cut-measuring policy is often presented as the lesser of two evils and the only possible way to come out of crisis.
  3.     Austerity leads the economy to perform more poorly. And there is no instance of a large economy getting to growth through austerity.
  4.     The budgetary cuts corresponds to political choices.
  5.     Increasing poverty and reduced support from the State can create the feeling of being further marginalized in society, which can affect overall social cohesion.   

3. Prioritization of resources for human rights 

3.1. Solving the economic crisis should be done with long-term measures and needs to be tackled responsibly with a long-term perspective. Budgetary cuts should not be blind to human rights and equality. We faces with the problem of identification and prioritization of those indicators that carry the potential for a shared view of how social progress is happening and how it can be sustained over time.

4. Measuring systems: what is the alternative way – synthesis?

4.1. The subject-matter of measurement's exercises in the area of sustainable development / well-being / general level of citizens' satisfaction / standard of living / social progress / social cohesion is rather more a considered synthesis. It may be the coordination of different systems of analysis and ultimately the simplification and  the creation of more clear model of what matters most to its people, not paying attention only on such traditional yardstick of national success as an economic indicator – GPD, which exclude the causes of imbalances within countries and between various population groups, regarding age, sex, family status or ethnic background. It is rather more synthesis than once more invention.

  1.     The task-force for the CoE in the rethinking of the Strategy on social cohesion on this stage is the generalization, analysis and presentation the world's trends and tendencies of socio-economic, demographic development in broad context (UNDP, UN (DESA), ILO, EU, Eurofund, NEF, OECD, The World Bank, The Stiglitz-Sen-Fitoussi Commission (CMEPSP), EBRD) with regards to the richest experience of the Organization and long methodological tradition of the past years on this track.


5. Searching for a new political commitment on social cohesive society

  1.     The CoE needs in rethinking of reorganization of society to achieve better balance between collective and personal progress.
  2.     Strengthening social cohesion requires a long-term vision and political commitment.

The relevant references

Equality and the crisis (Doc. 13661. 07 January 2015) //; Social exclusion — a danger for Europe's democracies (Doc. 13636. 27 October 2014) //; Europe's public administration in flux: public service under threat (Doc. 13529. 06 June 2014) //; Measuring and fostering the well-being of European citizens  (Doc. 13539. 17 April 2014) //; Stepping up action against global inequalities: Europe’s contribution to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) process
(Doc. 13368. 16 January 2013) //; Austerity measures – a danger for democracy and social rights (Doc. 12948. 7 June 2012) //; The role of parliaments in the consolidation and development of social rights in Europe (Doc. 12632. 6 June 2011) //; The consequences of the global financial crisis (Doc. 11807. 27 January 2009) //; Realising both economic growth and social protection in Europe in an era of globalisation (Doc. 11366. 9 August 2007) //; Demographic challenges for social cohesion (Doc. 10923. 3 May 2006) //; The role of ethical and solidarity-based financing and responsible consumption in social cohesion (Doc. 11120. 21 December 2006) //; Future of social security in Europe (Doc. 10098. 20 February 2004) //; Environmental accounting as a sustainable development tool (Doc. 10071 11 February 2004) //; Globalisation and sustainable development (Doc. 9660. 17 January 2003) //; Challenges of social policy in our ageing societies (Doc. 9615. 31 October 2002) // Development of a new social system (Doc. 8872. 16 October 2000) //; Second World Summit on Social Development (Doc. 8730. 17 April 2000) //; Fighting social exclusion and strengthening social cohesion in Europe (Doc. 7981. 12 January 1998) //; Follow-up to the Copenhagen Summit on Social Development //; Follow-up to the Copenhagen Summit on Social Development (Doc.7492. 16 February 1996) //; etc.            




M.Oreshina, PhD in history

MFA, Russian Federation


The global process of the elaboration of adaptable comprehensive new and consensual instrument for measurement of social progress,

well-being, social cohesion for mitigation of circumstances of economic crisis and tackling the recent  economic downturn 


International organizations

Indexes of indicators, projects, programs, initiatives,
reports and reviews

The subject-matter of expert's discussions 


























































Human Development Index


Inequality-adjusted Human


Development Index


Gender Inequality Index


Multidimensional poverty Index


Gender  Development Index


Human Development Reports (HDR)




































Seminar “Social cohesion in a shifting world”, 27 January 2012, New York by DESA’s Development Policy Analysis Division’s 



The 2014 Human Development Report - “Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience provides a fresh perspective on vulnerability and proposes ways to strengthen resilience”.

The Human Development Index (HDI) is a summary measure of average achievement in

3 key dimensions of human development

(except inequalities, poverty,
human security, empowerment and etc.)


1. a long and healthy life;

2. being knowledgeable;

3. have a decent standard of living.


Human Development Report 2014

Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience”





  • Human Development Report 1990 “Concept and Measurement of Human Development”


Human Development Report 1992

«Global Dimensions of Human Development»





Human Development Report 1994

«New Dimensions of Human Security»



Human Development Report 2000

«Human Rights and Human Development»
















NEF (Center of well-being)

The Happy Planet Index (HPI)


The New Economics Foundation (NEF), existing from 1986 after two international conferences known as TOES (The Other Economic Summit), is the UK's leading think-tank promoting social, economic and environmental justice.

The HPI components are:


1. life expectancy (from UNDP Human Development Reports);

2. experienced well-being;

3. Ecological Footprint (a measure of resource consumption by WWF).



Project “Monitoring and Assessing progress on decent work”
(MAP) since 2009 up 2013)





















Final conference on the ILO-EU project "Monitoring and Assessing Progress on Decent Work"
(18-19 November 2013)

MAP’s goals:

- facilitate the identification of decent work indicators, relevant at national level;

- support data collection through questionnaire design, surveys and database management;

- use the collected data for analysis of decent work trends and deficits in order to mainstream decent work objectives into national policies. 

10 substantive elements

of decent work, with gender equality and other forms of
non-discrimination as cross-cutting issues, are:

1. employment opportunities;

2. adequate earnings and productive work;

3. decent hours;

4. combing work, family and personal life;

5. work that should be abolished;

6. stability and security of work;

7. equal opportunity and treatment in employment;

8. safe work environment;

9. social security;

10. social dialogue, workers’ and employers’ representation.



The event was focused on the main results of the project and validated the methodology developed in the project countries in the light of the post-2015 development agenda.































The Beyond GDP” Initiative – since 2009;




Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament GDP and beyond: Measuring progress in a changing world” (Brussels, 20.8.2009)









Europe 2020 A strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth”







It reflects the idea to develop indicators that are as clear and appealing as GDP, but more inclusive of environmental and social aspects of progress. It is the attempt to elaborate alternative additional measuring system, which could properly measure individual and collective well-being. Economic indicators such as GDP were never designed to be comprehensive measures of prosperity and well-being. So policy-makers need in adequate indicators to address global challenges of the 21st century such as climate change, poverty, resource depletion, health and quality of life.










3 mutually reinforcing priorities:


1. Smart growth: developing an economy based on knowledge and innovation.

2. Sustainable growth: promoting a more resource efficient, greener and more competitive economy.

3. Inclusive growth: fostering a high-employment economy delivering social and territorial cohesion.


Inclusive growth means empowering people through high levels of employment, investing in skills, fighting poverty and modernising labour markets, training and social protection systems so as to help people anticipate and manage change, and build a cohesive society. It is also essential that the benefits of economic growth spread to all parts of the Union, including its outermost regions, thus strengthening territorial cohesion. It is about ensuring access and opportunities for all throughout the lifecycle. Europe needs to make full use of its labour potential to face the challenges of an ageing population and rising global competition. Policies to promote gender equality will be needed to increase labour force participation thus adding to growth and social cohesion”.


One of the flagship initiatives to catalyse progress is "European platform against poverty" to ensure social and territorial cohesion such that the benefits of growth and jobs are widely shared and people experiencing poverty and social exclusion are enabled to live in dignity and take an active part in society”.




















Brussels, 3.3.2010

COM(2010) 2020 final;







3d European Quality of Life survey (EQLS – 2003, 2007, 2012)

«Quality of life in Europe: Impacts of the crisis” of 27 November 2012




Report “Social cohesion and well-being in the EU” 25 November 2014










«Cohesive society is characterised by resilient social relations, a positive emotional connectedness between its members and the community and a pronounced focus on the common good. Social relations, in this context, are the horizontal network that exists between individuals and groups within the society. Connectedness refers to the positive ties between individuals and their country and its institutions. A focus on the common good, finally, is reflected in the actions and attitudes of the members of society that demonstrate responsibility for others and for the community as a whole. These are the three core aspects of cohesion.”


9 dimensions of social cohesion,

which is a measurable construct.

1. Identification;

2. trust in institutions;

3. perception of fairness;

4. social network;

5. trust in people;

6. acceptance of diversity;

7. solidarity and helpfulness;

8. respect for social rights;

9. civic participation




















Strategy for Social Cohesion approved by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 13 July 2000


Regarding definition of social cohesion:

It does not define social cohesion as such but seeks to identify some of the factors in social cohesion such as:

- setting up mechanisms and institutions which will prevent the factors of division (such as an excessive gap between rich and poor or the multiple forms of discrimination) from becoming so acute as to endanger social harmony;

- the importance of decent and adequately remunerated employment;

- measures to combat poverty and social exclusion, particularly in areas such as housing, health, education and training, employment and income distribution and social services;

- strengthening social security systems;

- developing policies for families, with particular emphasis on children and the elderly;

- partnership with civil society bodies, in particular trade unions, employers’ representatives and NGOs”.


Taking into account the political context “The strengthening of social cohesion can therefore be seen as a preventive strategy designed to reduce the risk of future social and political disruption”.


p.4 “The Heads of State and Government of the member States of the Council of Europe, meeting in October 1997 for the Organisation's Second Summit, identified social cohesion as "one of the foremost needs of the wider Europe and … an essential complement to the promotion of human rights and dignity" (Final Declaration)”.

p.10. “A strategy for social cohesion must first identify the factors of division within society and then design or facilitate mechanisms, processes and institutions that prevent them from becoming so acute as to endanger social peace”.

p.17. “This means that social cohesion cannot rest content with ad hoc policies designed to deal with crises or emergencies, but must be the focus of a new commitment by member States in the social field”.

(CDCS (2000)43)




Revised strategy for Social Cohesion approved by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 31 March 2004

A new version of Strategy on social cohesion in the reduction of 2004 proposed to build social cohesion on the human rights-based approach, when social cohesion was understood as responsibility shared by all.

CoE supported 5 principles:


1. clarifying and maintaining the essential role of the State and other public bodies;

2. integrating the social dimension into economic life;

3. developing a new ethic of social responsibility;

4. supporting families and encouraging family solidarity;

5. encouraging participation in civil society.


The version of 2004 included new parts: “Evaluation and revision of the Strategy for Social Cohesion” and “Measuring social cohesion”.     


A new version reaffirmed the essential responsibilities of governments in the area of social policy (p.18). The state should act as guarantor of human rights and participatory democracy (p.19).  



Concerted development of social cohesion indicators: Methodological guide, 2005

Selection of 20 key indicators
for each component of social cohesion (p.110-111)

Equity in the enjoyment of rights

1. inequality of income distribution

2. long-term unemployment rate

3. life expectancy at birth

4. proportion of homeless in the population / population without access to quality housing

Dignity recognition

5. assumption of senior responsibilities for women

6. ethnic or religious ghettos

7. elderly people who receive a minimum old age allowance

Autonomy / occupational and personal development

8. proportion of overind-ebted households / proposition of households below the poverty threshold in spite of both parents working

9. dropout rate at the minimum school-leaving age without qualifications

10. ability of children from disadvantaged social backgrounds to succeed at school

Participation / commitment

11. participation in elections by 18-34 year-olds

12. proportion of the budget reserved  for social issues

13. workers with disabilities in the public and private sector 

14. proportion of jobs in the voluntary sector

15. elderly people living with their families

16. confidence in public institutions

17. suicide rate

18. awareness of human rights and the right to justice

19. subjective perception of health

20. murder rate

See: p.98.
Chapter 3.
“Development and choice of indicators”



New Strategy and Council of Europe Action Plan for Social Cohesion approved by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 7 July 2010


Social cohesion as a society’s capacity to ensure the well-being of all its members by minimising disparities and avoiding marginalisation; to manage differences and divisions and to ensure the means of achieving welfare for all. Social cohesion is a dynamic process and is essential for achieving social justice, democratic security and sustainable development”.


 4 pillars of the New Strategy


1. reinvesting in social rights and a cohesive society;

2. building a Europe of responsibilities that are both shared and social;

3. strengthening representation and democratic decision making and expanding social dialogue and civic engagement;

4. building a secure future for all. 




1st Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Social Cohesion “Investing in social cohesion – investing in stability and the well-being of society”

(Moscow, 26-27 February 2009)

From Moscow Ministerial Declaration (The Final Declaration):

We, the Ministers responsible for Social Cohesion of Council in Europe member States, request the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe

to recognise that social cohesion supports the core objectives of the Council of Europe on human rights, democracy and the rule of law;

to review the Revised Social Cohesion Strategy in the light of the High-Level Task Force report, taking into account the challenges resulting from the global economic crisis;

on the basis of this review, to draw up a Council of Europe Action Plan in the field of social cohesion, building on existing activities and taking financial resources into account;

to entrust this work to the European Committee of Social Cohesion, in co-operation with other relevant Council of Europe bodies, and with a view to reporting to the Committee of Ministers regularly;

to intensify cooperation with the European Union, relevant United Nations bodies and other international institutions working in this field, in order to optimise efforts and create synergies”.


The Final Declaration confirms that social cohesion “is more relevant than ever and requires a renewed political commitment”.



2nd Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Social Cohesion “Building a secure future for all” (Istanbul, Turkey,
11-12 October 2012)

From Istanbul Ministerial Declaration:

The Ministers responsible for Social Cohesion of Council of Europe member States “recommend, that the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe:

i. gives high political priority to social cohesion as a strategic concept for the Council of Europe, in particular in times of crises;

ii. entrusts the European Committee for Social Cohesion (CDCS) with the tasks of:

- seeking solutions to current challenges in the field of social cohesion, coordinating transversal implementation of activities and facilitating the implementation and impact evaluation of the Council of Europe’s New Strategy and Action Plan for Social Cohesion at national level, upon request from member States, and by providing them with practical tools, including an implementation agenda, to achieve more social cohesion through immediate action;

- taking stock, analysing and evaluating the concepts, methods and tools used in initiatives to develop new forms of action and shared social responsibility for the future;

- elaborating concrete guidelines to assist member States, upon their request, in protecting and empowering groups of vulnerable persons, particularly in times of crises, and in achieving social sustainability through intergenerational solidarity;

iii. intensifies co-operation with relevant United Nations bodies, with the European Union, (particularly in the framework of the Europe 2020 Strategy aiming at reducing poverty) and with international organisations working in this field, by exploring further areas for joint action and exchanges, in order also to allow for the optimisation of efforts and the creation of further synergies”...

Welcome the offer from Azerbaijan to host the next Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Social Cohesion in 2015.”

(MINCONF SOC (2012) 2 final)
















































OECD The Better Life Initiative”














The Better Life index”








How's Life? 2013: Measuring well-being”










OECD Guidelines on Measuring Subjective Well-being, OECD Publishing, 2013







Perspectives in Global Development 2012: Social Cohesion in a Shifting World”, report published by OECD.







11 dimensions of “The Better Life Initiative”:


1. cover income and wealth;

2. jobs and revenues;

3. housing conditions;

4. health;

5. balance between work and private life;

6. education and skills;

7. social connections;

8. civic engagements and governance;

9. environmental quality;

10. personal security;

11. subjective well-being.


The Better Life Index”

provides a comprehensive management toll for Europe. It can be adapted to different national circumstances and requirements. This approach enables Europe to move beyond GDP and consumerism to embrace aspects which matter to people.




How's Life? 2013: Measuring well-being”


 4 areas of review of well-being:


1. the human costs of the financial crises;

2. well-being in the workplace;

3. gender gaps in the quality life;

4. measuring what matters in people's life.













A society is cohesive if it works towards the well-being of all its members, fights exclusion and marginalization, creates a sense of belonging, promotes trust and offers its members the opportunity of upward social mobility”.

The report “looks at social cohesion through three different, but equally important, lenses: social inclusion, social capital and social mobility”.

The measurement of these dimensions should not only involve traditional measures […] but should integrate subjective measures such as people's perception about their own feelings as well”.


















The World Bank

The WB's initiatives


- inequality of economic opportunity

- The Human Opportunity Index (HOI)

- The consideration disparities in connection with gender, race, birthplace, parents' education and jobs.

 - Created in 2008 by a consortium of researchers sponsored by the World Bank, The HOI calculates how personal circumstances (e.g., birthplace, wealth, race, or gender) impact the probability a child has of accessing the services that are necessary to succeed in life (e.g., timely education, basic health, or access to electricity). The HOI was first applied to Latin America. Firstly, the idea of giving people equal opportunity early in life, whatever their socioeconomic background, is embraced across the political spectrum. Secondly, the HOI try to make it possible to redirect social policy toward equity (where there is political consensus) and away from equality (where there is not). Many existing social policies and programs are already equity-enhancing. But focusing on equity reveals new points of emphasis along the individual's life-cycle. The single most powerful determinant of your chances in life appears to be your mother's education--not your father's, but your mother's educating girls today enhances equity for all tomorrow.




The Stiglitz-Sen-Fitoussi Commission (CMEPSP — since 2009)


12 Recommendations:


Recommendation 1: When evaluating material well-being, look at income and consumption rather than production.

Recommendation 2: Emphasise the household perspective.

Recommendation 3: Consider income and consumption jointly with wealth.

Recommendation 4: Give more prominence to the distribution of income, consumption and wealth.

Recommendation 5: Broaden income measures to non-market activities.

Recommendation 6: Quality of life depends on people’s objective conditions and capabilities.

Recommendation 7: Quality-of-life indicators in all the dimensions covered should assess inequalities in a comprehensive way.

Recommendation 8: Surveys should be designed to assess the links between various quality-of-life domains for each person, and this information should be used when designing policies in various fields.

Recommendation 9: Statistical offices should provide the information needed to aggregate across quality-of-life dimensions,

allowing the construction of different indexes.

Recommendation 10: Measures of both objective and subjective well-being provide key information about people’s quality of life

Recommendation 11: Sustainability assessment requires a well-identified dashboard of indicators.

Recommendation 12: The environmental aspects of sustainability deserve a separate follow-up based on a well-chosen set of physical indicators.;




The EBRD & World Bank

Life in Transition. A survey of people’s experiences and attitudes (LiTS)


4 key areas:


1. the questionnaire on personal information on aspects of material


2. measures of satisfaction and attitudes towards economic and political reforms as well as public expectations and appetite for further reforms;

3. individual “histories” through transition;

4. the questionnaire attempts to capture the extent to which crime and corruption are affecting people’s lives, and the degree to which trust, both among ordinary citizens and in state institutions, has changed over time.



Table is prepared by Ms. M.Oreshina, PhD in historical sciences

MFA, Russian Federation

February, 2015