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Is Work Bad for Health? The Role of Constraint versus Choice

Author

Listed:
  • Eve Caroli

    () (PSL - PSL Research University, IZA - Institute for the Study of Labor - Institute for the Study of Labor, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris, PSE - Paris School of Economics, LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine, Legos - Laboratoire d'Economie et de Gestion des Organisations de Santé - Université Paris-Dauphine)

  • Andrea Bassanini

    () (EconomiX - UPN - Université Paris Nanterre - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, OCDE - Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques - Organisation de Coopération et de Développement Economiques, IZA - Institute for the Study of Labor - Institute for the Study of Labor)

Abstract

This paper reviews the literature on the impact of work on health. We consider work along two dimensions: (i) the intensive margin, i.e. how many hours an individual works when employed and (ii) the extensive margin, i.e. whether an individual is in employment or not. We show that most of the evidence on the negative health impact of work found in the literature is based on situations in which workers have essentially no control (no choice) over the amount of work they provide. In essence, what is detrimental to health is not so much work per se as much as the gap which may exist between the actual and the desired amount of work, both at the intensive and extensive margins.

Suggested Citation

  • Eve Caroli & Andrea Bassanini, 2015. "Is Work Bad for Health? The Role of Constraint versus Choice," PSE - Labex "OSE-Ouvrir la Science Economique" halshs-01247138, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:pseose:halshs-01247138
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01247138
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    Cited by:

    1. Knaus, Michael C. & Otterbach, Steffen, 2016. "Work Hour Mismatch and Job Mobility: Adjustment Channels and Resolution Rates," IZA Discussion Papers 9735, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Eric Defebvre, 2016. "Harder, better, faster... yet stronger? Working conditions and self-declaration of chronic diseases," TEPP Working Paper 2016-07, TEPP.
    3. Hélène Blake & Clémentine Garrouste, 2017. "Collateral effects of a pension reform in France," Working Papers hal-01500683, HAL.
    4. Lucifora, Claudio & Vigani, Daria, 2018. "Healthcare Utilization at Retirement: The Role of the Opportunity Cost of Time," IZA Discussion Papers 11727, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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