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Workers on the Border between Employment and Self-employment

Author

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  • Ulrike Muehlberger
  • Silvia Pasqua

Abstract

The number of workers on the border between self-employment and employment has strongly increased across Europe over the last decade. This paper investigates whether and in what respect these workers differ from employees and self-employed, and analyses whether these work relationships are a stepping stone to more stable employment in the short-run using Italian data. Depending on the data source, the “para-subordinates” represent between 1.8 percent and 5.3 percent of the Italian labor force. Since most of them work only for one company and are strongly integrated into the firm of the contract partner, we argue that labor and social security law discriminates against these workers whose status is in fact very close to employees. We find that they are not low-qualified workers, but young, highly educated professionals. At the same time these contracts seem not to be a port of entry into the labor market nor do we find that they are a vehicle to more stable jobs. However, they are a possibility for women to work part-time.

Suggested Citation

  • Ulrike Muehlberger & Silvia Pasqua, 2009. "Workers on the Border between Employment and Self-employment," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 67(2), pages 201-228.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:rsocec:v:67:y:2009:i:2:p:201-228
    DOI: 10.1080/00346760701875215
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fabio Berton & Lia Pacelli & Giovanna Segre, 2005. "Il lavoro parasubordinato in Italia: tra autonomia del lavoratore e precarietà del lavoro," Rivista italiana degli economisti, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 57-100.
    2. 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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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mussida Chiara & Sciulli Dario, 2015. "Flexibility Policies and Re-employment Probabilities in Italy," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 15(2), pages 621-651, April.
    2. Sieds, 2012. "Complete Volume LXVI n.1 2012," RIEDS - Rivista Italiana di Economia, Demografia e Statistica - Italian Review of Economics, Demography and Statistics, SIEDS Societa' Italiana di Economia Demografia e Statistica, vol. 66(1), pages 1-296.
    3. Sarah Wall, 2015. "Dimensions of Precariousness in an Emerging Sector of Self-Employment: A Study of Self-Employed Nurses," Gender, Work and Organization, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(3), pages 221-236, May.
    4. Eichhorst, Werner & Kahanec, Martin & Kendzia, Michael J. & Wehner, Caroline & al., et, 2013. "Report No. 54: Social Protection Rights of Economically Dependent Self-employed Workers," IZA Research Reports 54, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Böheim, René & Mühlberger, Ulrike, 2009. "Dependent self-employment: workers between employment and self-employment in the UK," Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung - Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 42(2), pages 182-195.
    6. Concepción Román & Emilio Congregado & José Millán, 2011. "Dependent self-employment as a way to evade employment protection legislation," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 363-392, October.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    self-employment; dependency; outsourcing;

    JEL classification:

    • K31 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Labor Law
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure

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