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Work Hours Constraints and Health

  • Bell, David N.F.

    ()

    (University of Stirling)

  • Otterbach, Steffen

    ()

    (University of Hohenheim)

  • Sousa-Poza, Alfonso

    ()

    (University of Hohenheim)

The issue of whether employees who work more hours than they want to suffer adverse health consequences is important not only at the individual level but also for governmental formation of work time policy. Our study investigates this question by analyzing the impact of the discrepancy between actual and desired work hours on self-perceived health outcomes in Germany and the United Kingdom. Based on nationally representative longitudinal data, our results show that work-hour mismatches (i.e., differences between actual and desired hours) have negative effects on workers’ health. In particular, we show that “overemployment” – working more hours than desired – has negative effects on different measures of self-perceived health.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6126.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Annales d'Économie et de Statistique, 2012, 105-106, 35-54
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6126
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  1. Joseph Altonji & Christina Paxson, 1987. "Labor Supply Preferences, Hours Constraints, and Hours-Wage Tradeoffs," Working Papers 594, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  2. Gert G. Wagner & Joachim R. Frick & Jürgen Schupp, 2007. "The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) – Scope, Evolution and Enhancements," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 127(1), pages 139-169.
  3. Bell, Linda A. & Freeman, Richard B., 2001. "The incentive for working hard: explaining hours worked differences in the US and Germany," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 181-202, May.
  4. Otterbach, Steffen, 2009. "Mismatches between actual and preferred work time: empirical evidence of hours constraints in 21 countries," FZID Discussion Papers 07-2009, University of Hohenheim, Center for Research on Innovation and Services (FZID).
  5. Andrew Harvey & Arun Mukhopadhyay, 2007. "When Twenty-Four Hours is not Enough: Time Poverty of Working Parents," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 82(1), pages 57-77, May.
  6. Clair Vickery, 1977. "The Time-Poor: A New Look at Poverty," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 12(1), pages 27-48.
  7. Chamberlain, Gary, 1980. "Analysis of Covariance with Qualitative Data," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 225-38, January.
  8. Joachim Merz & Tim Rathjen, 2009. "Time and Income Poverty - An Interdependent Multidimensional Poverty Approach with German Time Use Diary Data," FFB-Discussionpaper 79, Research Institute on Professions (Forschungsinstitut Freie Berufe (FFB)), LEUPHANA University Lüneburg.
  9. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2002. "How important is Methodology for the Estimates of the Determinants of Happiness?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 02-024/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  10. Geyer, Johannes & Myck, Michal, 2010. "Poorer Health – Shorter Hours? Health and Flexibility of Hours of Work," IZA Discussion Papers 5169, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Alfonso Sousa-Poza & Fred Henneberger, 2002. "An Empirical Analysis of Working-Hours Constraints in Twenty-one Countries," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 60(2), pages 209-242.
  12. Shulamit Kahn & Kevin Lang, 1987. "Constraints on the Choice of Work Hours: Agency vs. Specific-Capital," NBER Working Papers 2238, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Mark Wooden & Diana Warren & Robert Drago, 2009. "Working Time Mismatch and Subjective Well-being," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 47(1), pages 147-179, 03.
  14. Euwals, R.W. & van Soest, A.H.O., 1996. "Desired and Actual Labour Supply of Unmarried Men and Women in the Netherlands," Discussion Paper 1996-23, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  15. Shulamit Kahn & Kevin Lang, 1996. "Hours Constraints and the Wage/Hours Locus," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(s1), pages 71-75, April.
  16. Stewart, Mark B & Swaffield, Joanna K, 1997. "Constraints on the Desired Hours of Work of British Men," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(441), pages 520-35, March.
  17. Landers, Renee M & Rebitzer, James B & Taylor, Lowell J, 1996. "Rat Race Redux: Adverse Selection in the Determination of Work Hours in Law Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 329-48, June.
  18. Das, Marcel & van Soest, Arthur, 1999. "A panel data model for subjective information on household income growth," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 40(4), pages 409-426, December.
  19. Sousa-Poza, Alfonso & Ziegler, Alexandre, 2003. "Asymmetric information about workers' productivity as a cause for inefficient long working hours," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(6), pages 727-747, December.
  20. Charlene Kalenkoski & Karen Hamrick & Margaret Andrews, 2011. "Time Poverty Thresholds and Rates for the US Population," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 104(1), pages 129-155, October.
  21. Jerry Jacobs & Kathleen Green, 1998. "Who Are the Overworked Americans?," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 56(4), pages 442-459.
  22. Gregori Baetschmann & Kevin E. Staub & Rainer Winkelmann, 2011. "Reconsidering the analysis of longitudinal happiness data - with an application to the effect of unemployment," ECON - Working Papers 004, Department of Economics - University of Zurich, revised Jun 2011.
  23. Baetschmann, Gregori & Staub, Kevin E. & Winkelmann, Rainer, 2011. "Consistent Estimation of the Fixed Effects Ordered Logit Model," IZA Discussion Papers 5443, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  24. Gerd Grözinger & Wenzel Matiaske & Verena Tobsch, 2008. "Arbeitszeitwünsche, Arbeitslosigkeit und Arbeitszeitpolitik," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 103, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  25. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
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