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Atypical Work and Ireland’s Labour Market Collapse and Recovery

Author

Listed:
  • Elish Kelly

    (Economic and Social Research Institute and Trinity College Dublin)

  • Alan Barrett

    (Economic and Social Research Institute, Trinity College Dublin and Institute of Labour Studies (IZA))

Abstract

Across many countries, the rise of atypical work has been noted whereby employees are increasingly in less secure contractual situations. While this might lead to more flexible labour markets, there are potential downsides for individuals. We explore the prevalence of atypical work in Ireland which provides a fascinating case study. Ireland experienced a dramatic deterioration in its labour market around the Great Recession with unemployment rising from 4.8 per cent in 2007 to 15 per cent in 2012. This situation was also reversed somewhat quickly with unemployment falling to 8 per cent by 2016. Such dramatic swings provide the context in which we explore whether atypical work increased for new job holders with the onset of recession and whether or not this weakened as the economy recovered. We find that atypical work did increase with the recession and, although moderating, the likelihood of new jobs being atypical persisted into the recovery. This raises important questions about whether economic recovery alone will improve job quality, in addition to job numbers.

Suggested Citation

  • Elish Kelly & Alan Barrett, 2017. "Atypical Work and Ireland’s Labour Market Collapse and Recovery," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 48(4), pages 463-488.
  • Handle: RePEc:eso:journl:v:48:y:2017:i:4:p:463-488
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. John T. Addison & Christopher J. Surfield, 2006. "The Use of Alternative Work Arrangements by the Jobless: Evidence from the CAEAS/CPS," Journal of Labor Research, Transaction Publishers, vol. 27(2), pages 149-162, April.
    2. Elish Kelly & Seamus McGuinness & Philip J O’connell & David Haugh & Alberto GonzÁlez Pandiella, 2014. "Transitions In and Out of Unemployment among Young People in the Irish Recession," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 56(4), pages 616-634, December.
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    5. Kelly, Elish & McGuinness, Seamus, 2015. "Impact of the Great Recession on unemployed and NEET individuals’ labour market transitions in Ireland," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 59-71.
    6. Alan Barrett & Yvonne McCarthy, 2007. "Immigrants in a Booming Economy: Analysing Their Earnings and Welfare Dependence," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 21(4‐5), pages 789-808, December.
    7. McGinnity, Fran & Russell, Helen & Watson, Dorothy & Kingston, Gillian & Kelly, Elish, 2014. "Winners and Losers? The Equality Impact of the Great Recession in Ireland," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number BKMNEXT265.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hennebry Barraí, 2018. "Regional Resilience in Ireland and The Existence of a Two-Tier Recovery," Quaestiones Geographicae, Sciendo, vol. 37(4), pages 99-110, December.

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