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Quality of Work: The Case of Part-Time Work in Italy

In: Non-Standard Employment and Quality of Work. The Case of Italy


  • Brendan J. Burchell

    (University of Cambridge)


The focus of this chapter is on the quality of part-time and full time employment by using available European datasets with a special attention to the Italian case. The evidence provided shows that one needs to be very cautious in generalizing about part-time employment in the EU when the function and rates of part-time work vary so greatly. A quality-of-work perspective finds much to commend part-time employment as a method of combining labour-market activity with domestic work or other non-labour market activities. But taking a life-cycle perspective, the picture is more mixed, with evidence that it impedes career progression and perpetuates gender inequalities. A short-term increase in the quality of life for Italian women and Italian families might be followed by an increased gender gap as women’s career advancement slows down, so increasing vertical gender segregation. The relatively high rate of involuntary part-time employment in Italy should be of some concern, and suggests that the quality of part-time work in Italy may still be lagging behind other western European countries. Given the trend towards deregulation, and the fact that the increase in part-time work in Italy has only really affected women, there arguably is a cause for concern that part-time employment is a move away from gender equality in Italy.

Suggested Citation

  • Brendan J. Burchell, 2012. "Quality of Work: The Case of Part-Time Work in Italy," AIEL Series in Labour Economics,in: Tindara Addabbo & Giovanni Solinas (ed.), Non-Standard Employment and Quality of Work. The Case of Italy, edition 1, chapter 9, pages 175-188 AIEL - Associazione Italiana Economisti del Lavoro.
  • Handle: RePEc:ail:chapts:06-09

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    More about this item


    part-time; quality of work; working condition; work-life balance; gender equality.;

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing


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