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Recent Developments in Part-Time Work in EU-15 Countries: Trends and Policy

  • Buddelmeyer, Hielke

    ()

    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research)

  • Mourre, Gilles

    ()

    (European Commission)

  • Ward-Warmedinger, Melanie E.

    ()

    (European Central Bank)

A growing part-time employment share has been a main feature of a number of industrialized countries over the past two decades. A considerable variation in the rate of part-time work is evident by gender, age group, industrial sector and occupation. The stylized facts support the view that part-time employment represents an important opportunity particularly for young, older and female workers to enter the labour markets of the European Union. For the majority of workers in these groups, the decision to work part-time has been a voluntary one, which is all the more satisfactory in terms of welfare maximization. Our results indicate that the development of the part-time employment rate over time and the strong variation in the PTR across countries are significantly affected by policy and institutions. In particular policy measures geared toward encouraging part-time work are found to be positively related to actual part-time developments. These measures include both the legal framework directly affecting part-time positions and the creation of financial incentives (subsidies and improvement of social protection) to take up a part-time job. Moreover, other labour market institutions, including benefit systems and the stringency of employment protection legislation for regular contracts, are found to significantly but indirectly influence the growth in part-time work.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1415.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1415
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  1. Buddelmeyer, Hielke & Mourre, Gilles & Ward-Warmedinger, Melanie E., 2005. "Part-Time Work in EU Countries: Labour Market Mobility, Entry and Exit," IZA Discussion Papers 1550, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Jacqueline O'Reilly & Silke Bothfeld, 2002. "What happens after working part time? Integration, maintenance or exclusionary transitions in Britain and western Germany," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 26(4), pages 409-439, July.
  3. Rob Euwals & Maurice Hogerbrugge, 2004. "Explaining the growth of part-time employment; factors of supply and demand," CPB Discussion Paper 31, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  4. Giuseppe Nicoletti & Stefano Scarpetta & Olivier Boylaud, 2000. "Summary Indicators of Product Market Regulation with an Extension to Employment Protection Legislation," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 226, OECD Publishing.
  5. Guy Laroque & Bernard Salanié, 2003. "Fertility and Financial Incentives in France," Working Papers 2003-32, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  6. Susan N. Houseman, 2000. "Why Employers Use Flexible Staffing Arrangements: Evidence from an Establishment Survey," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 01-67, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  7. Michèle Belot & Jan C. van Ours, 2004. "Does the recent success of some OECD countries in lowering their unemployment rates lie in the clever design of their labor market reforms?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 621-642, October.
  8. Olivier Blanchard & Justin Wolfers, 1999. "The Role of Shocks and Institutions in the Rise of European Unemployment: The Aggregate Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Henry S. Farber, 1999. "Alternative and Part-Time Employment Arrangements as a Response to Job Loss," NBER Working Papers 7002, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Buddelmeyer, Hielke & Mourre, Gilles & Ward-Warmedinger, Melanie E., 2004. "The Determinants of Part-Time Work in EU Countries: Empirical Investigations with Macro-Panel Data," IZA Discussion Papers 1361, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Farber, Henry S, 1999. "Alternative and Part-Time Employment Arrangements as a Response to Job Loss," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(4), pages S142-69, October.
  12. Euwals, Rob & Hogerbrugge, Maurice, 2004. "Explaining the Growth of Part-Time Employment: Factors of Supply and Demand," IZA Discussion Papers 1124, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Haskel, Jonathan & Kersley, Barbara & Martin, Christopher, 1997. "Labour Market Flexibility and Employment Adjustment: Micro Evidence from UK Establishments," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 49(3), pages 362-79, July.
  14. Blank, Rebecca M, 1988. "Simultaneously Modeling the Supply of Weeks and Hours of Work among Female Household Heads," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(2), pages 177-204, April.
  15. Rebecca M. Blank, 1994. "The Dynamics of Part-Time Work," NBER Working Papers 4911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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