Union membership in Denmark


Unlike most other countries, trade union membership is highly common in Denmark and most employed professionals are members of a trade union representing their interests.

Trade union membership is voluntary in Denmark, but there is a high level of union membership among Danish workers at all levels of employment. In fact, more than 70 % of Danish wage earners are members of a trade union.

The high number of union memberships in Denmark is due to two things:

  • The central role that trade unions play in the Danish labour market
  • The numerous member benefits

As a member you have access to a wide range of services related to contracts, career guidance, wage negotiations etc. Furthermore, membership provides a great opportunity to establish personal and professional networks, as there are several social and professional activities within the framework of the trade unions.

As a foreigner in Denmark, it pays to belong to a union that knows the danish labour market and gives you the best possible advice.

Selecting a trade union

Your choice of trade union depends on your training/position and workplace. IDA is the only trade union that represents engineers and science professionals.

Unemployment insurance funds

Danish trade unions are associated with specific unemployment insurance funds, but you do not need to be a member of both a trade union and an unemployment insurance fund – it is possible to be a member of just one of these organisations, independently of the other.

As an employee and a member of an unemployment insurance fund, you can receive unemployment benefit if unemployed for a period of time.

IDA is associated with Akademikernes, which is the largest and most inexpensive unemployment insurance fund for academics in Denmark.