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Your Money or Your Life: Changing Job Quality in OECD Countries

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  • Andrew E. Clark

Abstract

Job quality may usefully be thought of as depending on both job values (how much workers care about different job outcomes) and the job outcomes themselves. Here, both cross-section and panel data are used to examine changes in job quality in OECD countries during the 1990s. Despite rising wages and falling hours of work, overall job satisfaction is either stable or declining. These movements are neither due to changes in the type of workers nor because of changes in their job values. Some pieces of evidence point to stress and hard work as being strong candidates for what has gone wrong with employees' jobs. We find evidence of increasing inequality in a number of job outcomes. Some groups of workers have done better than others: the young and the highly educated have been insulated against downward movements in job quality, and there is tentative evidence that trade unions may have protected their members against adverse job outcomes. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd/London School of Economics 2005.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew E. Clark, 2005. "Your Money or Your Life: Changing Job Quality in OECD Countries," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 43(3), pages 377-400, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:brjirl:v:43:y:2005:i:3:p:377-400
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alex Bryson & Lorenzo Cappellari & Claudio Lucifora, 2004. "Does Union Membership Really Reduce Job Satisfaction?," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 42(3), pages 439-459, September.
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    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions

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