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A little less autonomy? The future of working time flexibility and its limits
European Labour Law Journal  (IF),  Pub Date : 2020-05-12, DOI: 10.1177/2031952520922246
Marta Glowacka

The European Court of Justice has recently issued rulings on the interpretation of the European Working Time Directive 2003/88, which appear to restrict flexible working time arrangements(especially Matzak C-518/15,Syndicat C-254/18 and CCOOC-55/18). Only a few months prior tothe latter ruling of the CJEU, the Austrian legislator amended the Working Time Act in orderto make it more flexible. The article argues that the measures taken by the Austrian legislator toenable more flexibility and autonomy can still be regarded as compatible with Union law. In general,the article tackles the question of possible further legislative developments in order to strike abalance between autonomy and the need for security of both parties to the employment relationship. Among other suggestions, the article introduces the concept of molecularisation ofworking time and examines whether work intensity should be introduced as a qualitativedimension to the concept of working time, thus deviating from the current European WorkingTime Directive. Finally, the article suggests security measures – often referring to Austria as a bestpractice example – in order to safeguard workers in view of working time flexibility.