As an advisory and consultative body of employers' representatives, union representatives and independent experts, the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands (SER) aims to help create social consensus on national and international socio-economic issues.
The SER advises the Dutch government and parliament on the outlines of social and economic policy and on important legislation on social and economic issues. The SER’s advisory reports ideally have a dual role: to help shape cabinet policy to ensure it enjoys broad support from society and to help ensure the business sector operates in a socially responsible manner.
The SER’s advice is guided by the objective of social prosperity in its widest sense. This encompasses not only material progress (i.e., increased affluence and production), but also social progress (i.e., improved welfare and social cohesion) and a high-quality environment in which to live (i.e., environmental and spatial factors).
In its work, the SER is committed to detecting and interpreting signals from society. It offers various civil society organisations the opportunity to contribute specific expertise. The SER also shares information extensively with universities and policymakers in the Netherlands and abroad, and has regular contact with parliament and the various government departments.