Organization responsible for the statistics

Collection: Statistical Offices of the Voivodies;

Compilation: Statistical Offices of the Voivodies and the Central Statistical Office;

Publication: Central Statistical Office.

Objectives and users

To obtain information on the number of reasons for and character of collective disputes in Poland.

Major users: Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, trade unions, research centres and sociologists.


Strikes and lockouts: The statistics cover:

Rotating or revolving strikes, lockouts, working to rule, go-slows and overtime bans are not included.

Minimum threshold: duration of one hour.

Economic activities: All economic activities and sectors.

Workers: Workers directly involved and workers indirectly involved. Each worker taking part in a strike, for any length of time and regardless of his or her worktime, is included among the persons striking in the reporting unit. In addition to regular paid employees, including part-time workers, the statistics cover temporary and seasonal workers. Casual and unpaid family workers, workers laid off and workers absent on sick or annual leave or absent for any other reason are not included.

Geographic areas: Whole country.

Types of data collected

a) number of strikes and lockouts: number of strikes;

b) number of establishments involved;

c) number of workers involved;

d) duration;

e) amount of time not worked ("time lost");

f) other:

Concepts and definitions

(Source: Law of 23 May 1991 on solving collective disputes (Dz. U. Nr. 55 poz. 236) and the Presidential Regulation of the Central Statistical Office.)

Strike: A collective employees' refusal of work in order to solve a dispute concerning conditions of work, wages and salaries or social security benefits and trade union rights and privileges of employees or other groups with the right to associate in trade unions. A strike is the final solution and it cannot be announced without previously resorting to all other dispute solving possibilities.

Methods of measurement

Strikes and lockouts: The basic unit of measurement used to record a strike is the establishment (local unit). The resumption of a strike that is interrupted but later recommences, still due to the same case of dispute, is counted as a new strike.

Establishments: The establishment (local unit) is an organised entity situated in a place identified by a separate address, under which financially separate activity is maintained by at least one employed person.

Workers involved: The number of workers involved is taken as the number of persons employed in the establishment in which the strike occurred, from the employment records for the day on which the strike began. The number of employees taking part in the strike comprises all persons who participated in the action regardless of the duration of their participation. A part-time worker involved in a strike is counted as an individual (i.e. one part-time worker involved = one worker involved). The number of workers involved includes temporary workers and seasonal workers.

Duration: It is measured in calender days, or hours if the strike does not last for more than 24 hours, from the date the strike began to the date it terminated in the economic unit involved.

Time not worked ("time lost"): Total time not worked is measured in workhours. It is taken from the timekeeping records for production workers in the enterprise. The reporting unit supplies the number of workhours not worked as a result of a strike for all persons taking part in the strike and for the production group. This is the sum of hours not worked, established for each worker taking part in the strike. Workhours are subsequently converted to workdays. Time not worked is measured for all workers involved, whether directly or indirectly involved, and is available separately for each group. The shorter working hours of part-time workers are taken into account, as the basis for the calculation comprises the statutory hours of work of each worker. Overtime is not taken into account.


a) cause of dispute: not applicable;

b) outcome of dispute: not applicable;

c) method of settlement: not applicable;

d) economic activity: the statistics are classified according to the Classification of Economic Activities of the European Communities (NACE), rev. 1;

e) occupational group: not applicable;

f) number of establishments involved: not applicable;

g) number of workers involved: not applicable;

h) duration: not applicable;

i) time not worked: not applicable.

Reference period and periodicity

The statistics are compiled and published for each month for reference periods of one month. They are published monthly and annually. The information is collected immediately after the end of each strike. The amount of time not worked is included in the statistics for each of the period in which time was not worked. Separate information for strikes ending during the reference period are compiled each month.

Analytical measures

Historical background of the series

An independent data collection on strikes was introduced on 1 January 1989; its goal was to gather information on the number of reasons for and character of collective disputes in Poland.

Strike statistics began in 1980 when gathering information on strikes was attempted for the first time. Since then, it has been carried out regularly by the Central Statistical Office. However, both the methods and the range of data collected have been modified or changed. In the years 1980-1988, data on strikes were gathered in a survey on working time, as part of time not worked.

The data collection covered units of the public economy, of the material production sphere outside agriculture. In industry, data were collected monthly, in the other branches of the national economy (material type), data was collected quarterly. The range of the data on strikes was very poor at that time and was limited only to information on the time not worked due to strikes (the number of hours in the reference period).

On 1 January 1989, the independent data collection on strikes was introduced as the Statistical Card on Strikes. The units of the material production (excluding agriculture) are obliged to complete this Card in the case of any strike action. Basic definitions applied in the Statistical Card on Strikes were in accordance with the 1993 ILO recommendations, and the types of data were agreed with trade unions.

In the years 1990-92, compulsory reporting was extended to all material production units and units outside material sphere excluding establishment of natural persons performing economic activity.

Since 1993, reports have been required from all large units in which the number of employed exceeds 20 or 50 people (depending on the branch of the national economy), and also natural persons performing economic activity. Since 1994, survey has covered all units of the national economy in which a strike lasting at least one hour occurred, irrespective of the number of employed and type of activity.


Series available: The following tables are published:

Bibliographic references: The data are published in:

Central Statistical Office: Information on social and economic situation in the country (monthly);

Idem: Statistical Yearbook (annual);

Idem: Labour Yearbook (four-yearly).

Methodological information is published in the Labour Yearbook.

Not all data are published: they can be accessible in line with the rules on confidentiality of individual data.

Data published by the ILO: The following data are furnished regularly to the ILO for publication the Yearbook of Labour Statistics., relating to strikes according to economic activity: number of strikes, number of workers involved and number of days not worked and rates of days not worked per 1,000 workers.

Confidentiality: According to the Act on Public Statistics, data which can be linked to a particular person (individual data) can be published, especially if a given aggregation embraces less than 3 units (from the Region register).

International standards

Methodology and organisation of data collection on strikes is generally in accordance with the ILO recommendation. Following the improvements in labour statistics, the data collection on strikes will also be developed.

The concepts, definitions and methods used were established in consultation with the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection and trade unions.

Methods of data collection

The basic form for data collection is the Statistical Card on Strikes. The employer (establishment) is required to provide information on strikes. If a strike lasts longer than one hour, the establishment must complete the Statistical Card on Strikes (a separate form for each action) and submit it within three days of the termination of the strike to a voivodship statistical office. The forms covers the following information: commencement and termination dates of the strike, mode of announcement, total number of employees and number of production workers employed in the establishment, type of labour dispute (headquarter of trade unions; branch trade unions; regional trade unions; established trade unions; group of employees), whether the strike was declared in line with the conflict-solving procedure (opinions of employer and trade union), type of strike (warning, regular, of which occupation), reasons for strike (economic, solidarity, participation in general strike, duration (in hours and days), total number of employees participating in the strike, of which the number of production workers, major demands and the agreed form for satisfying the demands, number of employees who did not participate directly in the strike but failed to perform their work due to the strike and time not worked by them.