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The “Continuous Collaborators” in Italy. Hybrids between Employment and Self-employment?


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  • Ulrike Muehlberger


  • Silvia Pasqua



Over the last decade Italy has seen a strong increase in the number of workers on the border between self-employment and employment. Depending on the data source the “parasubordinati”, i.e. workers with a “contract of continuous collaboration” (collaborators) represented between 1.8% (ISTAT, 2004) and 5.3% (Alteri and Oteri , 2004) of the Italian labour force. Since most of them work only for one company and are, moreover, strongly integrated into the firm of the contract partner, we argue that the Italian labour and social security law strongly discriminates against these workers who are, in fact, very close to employees. We investigate whether and in what respect the group of the collaborators differs from the group of employees and the group of the self-employed using the Italian Labour Force Survey (ILFS) of 2004 (4th quarter). Additionally, we analyse the short-term labour market transitions of collaborators to other labour market statuses. In contrast to other European countries, these collaborators are not low qualified workers, but young, highly educated professionals. At the same time the contracts of continuous collaboration are not a port of entry into the labour market nor do we find that these contracts are a vehicle to more stable jobs. However, they seem to be a possibility for women to work part-time.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY in its series CHILD Working Papers with number wp10_06.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpc:wplist:wp10_06

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Keywords: Self-employment; Dependency; Outsourcing;

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  1. Sara Rica & Amaia Iza, 2005. "Career Planning in Spain: Do Fixed-term Contracts Delay Marriage and Parenthood?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 49-73, November.
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Cited by:
  1. André van Stel & Roy Thurik & Sander Wennekers & Martin Carree, 2010. "The relationship between entrepreneurship and economic development: is it U-shaped?," Scales Research Reports H200824, EIM Business and Policy Research.
  2. Martin Carree & Andr� van Stel & Roy Thurik & Sander Wennekers, 2007. "The Relation between Economic Development and Business Ownership revisited," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 07-022/3, Tinbergen Institute.


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