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Why Has Work Effort Become More Intense?

  • Francis Green

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Effort-biased technological change and other explanations for work intensification are investigated. It is hypothesised that technological and organizational changes are one important source of work intensification and supportive evidence is found using establishment data for Britain in the 1990s. Work intensification has also been stimulated by the use of high-commitment human resource policies. A reduction in union power, and a rise in the use of temporary agency workers and contractors, were positively associated with work intensification; however, their impact during the 1990s was comparatively modest.

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File URL: ftp://ftp.ukc.ac.uk/pub/ejr/RePEc/ukc/ukcedp/0207.pdf
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Paper provided by School of Economics, University of Kent in its series Studies in Economics with number 0207.

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Date of creation: Jul 2002
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Handle: RePEc:ukc:ukcedp:0207
Contact details of provider: Postal: School of Economics, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NP
Phone: +44 (0)1227 827497
Web page: http://www.kent.ac.uk/economics/

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  1. Machin, S. & Van Reenen, J., 1997. "Technology and Changes in Skill Structure: Evidence from Seven OECD Countries," Papers 24, Centre for Economic Performance & Institute of Economics.
  2. John MacDuffie, 1995. "Human resource bundles and manufacturing performance: Organizational logic and flexible production systems in the world auto industry," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(2), pages 197-221, January.
  3. Francis Green, 2001. "It's Been A Hard Day's Night: The Concentration and Intensification of Work in Late Twentieth-Century Britain," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 39(1), pages 53-80, 03.
  4. Green, Francis & Felstead, Alan & Burchell, Brendan, 2000. " Job Insecurity and the Difficulty of Regaining Employment: An Empirical Study of Unemployment Expectations," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 62(0), pages 855-83, Special I.
  5. 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.
  6. Green, Francis, 2000. "The Impact of Company Human Resource Policies on Social Skills: Implications for Training Sponsorship, Quit Rates and Efficiency Wages," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 47(3), pages 251-72, August.
  7. Kochan, Thomas A., 1996. "What works at work : overview and assessment," Working papers 3886-96., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  8. Jacobson, Louis S & LaLonde, Robert J & Sullivan, Daniel G, 1993. "Earnings Losses of Displaced Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 685-709, September.
  9. David Fairris & Mark Brenner, 2001. "Workplace Transformation and the Rise in Cumulative Trauma Disorders: Is There a Connection?," Journal of Labor Research, Transaction Publishers, vol. 22(1), pages 15-28, January.
  10. Barzel, Yoram, 1973. "The Determination of Daily Hours and Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 220-38, May.
  11. Timothy F. Bresnahan & Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2002. "Information Technology, Workplace Organization, And The Demand For Skilled Labor: Firm-Level Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 339-376, February.
  12. Paul Gregg, 1996. "It Takes Two: Employment Polarisation in the OECD," CEP Discussion Papers dp0304, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  13. Green, Francis & McIntosh, Steven, 2001. "The intensification of work in Europe," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 291-308, May.
  14. Francis Green & Steven McIntosh, 1998. "Union power, cost of job loss, and workers' effort," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(3), pages 363-383, April.
  15. Gintis, Herbert & Ishikawa, Tsuneo, 1987. "Wages, work intensity, and unemployment," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 195-228, June.
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