Created in 1989 by Pierre Héritier, a former national responsible of CFDT trade union, chaired today by Jean-Cyril Spinetta, honorary President of Air-France KLM and Joël Decaillon, former deputy general secretary of ETUC, Lasaire is a think tank offering pluralist and European debates to employers and trade-unionists. It provides subjects for debate and goes deeper into the way social relations and policies are built up: setting and content of negotiations, laws and directives, trade unionism(s), new forms of management, social movements, European social model…Lasaire originality lies in its ability to develop both a “hands on” approach to reality and a social and macroeconomic vision on a large scale.
Lasaire opened up a fundamental reflection on the social dimension of Europe when it launched its biennials in 1990. These biennials have now become a reference point for the European social debate and are an opportunity for advancing social thinking, testing and developing new ideas, bringing together the widest possible range of actors and social cultures, and encouraging trickling down effects between social models.
Issues concerning employment and exclusion from the workplace and society have gradually come to the fore: the central theme of the Biennials can be summed up as: "How to put employment at the heart of Europe". To fulfil its ambition of putting employment and the social dimension at the centre of Europe, LASAIRE sought to create an original forum to facilitate pluralist exchanges of views, give social competencies and practices that are too often self-contained an opportunity to meet and compare their analyses, and outline suggestions and ingredients for solutions.
These biennials owe their originality to the fact that from the start the debates have been organized in a pluralist framework bringing together the European social actors (the European Commission, Business Europe, CEEP, ETUC) employer's federations and business representatives, trade union organizations and union officials in companies, academics and experts from the various member states.