Inequalities in use of the Internet for job search: similarities and contrasts by economic status in Great Britain
By 2009 four in every five job seekers in Great Britain were making use of the Internet in job search, generally alongside other methods. While the Internet has created new opportunities for job seekers, there are concerns that inequalities in use of and access to the Internet will intensify difficulties experienced by disadvantaged groups in finding work. This paper analyses the incidence and determinants of online job search in Great Britain, using Labour Force Survey data for 2006 to 2009. Use of the Internet increased over this period, with employed job seekers most likely to undertake online job search. A probit model reveals that age and highest qualification are key factors affecting individuals’ use of the Internet for job search, with older job seekers and those with lower education levels most likely to ‘lose out’ in terms of accessing employment opportunities via the Internet. Some significant urban and regional differences are revealed, indicating that job seekers from less prosperous regions and those outside major metropolitan areas are least likely to make use of the Internet for job search. Keywords: digital divide, economic status, inequalities, Internet, job search, unemployed
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