The establishment of a network of European labour law experts was initiated by Prof. Bernd Waas of the Labour Law Department at the University of Frankfurt (Germany) and Prof. Guus Heerma van Voss of the Labour Law Department at the University of Leiden (the Netherlands) . The constituting conference of the European Labour Law Network (ELLN) took place in Hagen (Germany) in 2005.
The ELLN consists of a team of non-governmental legal experts including all European Member States and EEA countries, and of a Scientific Committee. The European Labour Law Network is entirely independent and has no affiliation with either trade unions, employers' associations or individual employers.
The initial concept for the European Labour Law Network was to establish a platform for dialogue between labour law experts from across Europe and to facilitate the comparison of the different existing national labour law systems within the European Countries. The ELLN’s objective is to provide a framework in which future developments in labour law throughout Europe can be debated.
In December 2007, the European Labour Law Network signed a contract with the Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities of the European Commission in Brussels and consequently acquired a new dimension. The European Labour Law Network became the European Commission’s official advisory board on issues relating to the developments in individual and collective employment and labour law. The official name then became ‘European Network of Legal Experts in the Field of Labour Law, dealing with both individual and collective rights/aspects’, hereafter referred to as the Network.
In December 2011 there was a renewal of the contract between the European Labour Law Network and the European Commission.