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Work, Employment, and Society

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Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Monder Ram, Tahir Abbas, Balihar Sanghera Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 2. P. 353-372. 
Ethnic minority business activity has often been presented as a vehicle for upward mobility for owners and workers alike. Much attention has focused upon the owners themselves. The co-ethnic labour that such employers usually rely upon has often been treated as unproblematic. This paper aims to illuminate the experiences of workers in ethnic minority owned restaurants. In particular, the widely held view that working in a co-ethnic firm serves as an apprenticeship for eventual self-employment is explored. Rather than co-ethnic ties, workers' labour market experiences highlight the importance of the opportunity structure in shaping employment choices. The evidence of the current research suggests that the goal of self-employment was not widely held; and although many workers did move around to acquire better paid work, this was not part of a strategic route to becoming a restaurateur. Some workers did cherish such ambitions, but were inhibited by major obstacles. These included intense competition, high start-up costs, and a lack of know-how. The labour market and social context of the firm often militated against the hazardous proposition of self-employment.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Jan Windebank Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 2. P. 269-290. 
In recent years, much cross-national research on women's work has focused on the impact of the state in creating the conditions to enable women to combine paid work and motherhood. However, when dealing with women's domestic responsibilities, this research has concentrated heavily on caring functions, whilst largely ignoring the importance of other basic household chores. Furthermore, few studies have addressed the question of how state policy concerning women, work and childcare impacts on the ways in which parenting and domestic duties are constructed and distributed between mothers, fathers and others in the everyday experiences of individuals. The present article addresses both of these questions through evidence gathered from a qualitative cross-national comparative study of the child-care strategies of two groups of women, one French and one British, working in secretarial or clerical occupations, living with a partner and with at least one child aged under twelve. Minimal differences concerning the gender division of domestic and parenting work are discovered between these two national groups. This finding is then used to question some of the theoretical perspectives regarding the relationship between women's greater participation in employment and men's greater participation in domestic and parenting work.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Tracey Warren, Karen Rowlingson, Claire Whyley Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 3. P. 465-488. 
The size and source of the gender wage gap in Britain has been well researched. Women's typically lower status employment and their reduced, discontinuous career profiles when they have caring responsibilities have combined seriously to damage their ability to earn a decent wage. Such marked gender differences in employment patterns produce a substantial gender gap in levels of wealth too, yet despite this there has been less attention paid to the gendering of assets than there has to gender differentials in earnings and income. So to pull out these multi-dimensional effects of a gender disadvantaged labour market, this article explores the extent of wage and assets inequality in Britain in the mid 1990s. Analysis of the Family Resources Survey shows that women continue to have lower incomes than men even with their increased entry to the labour market, and have fewer chances to build up a safety net of savings in their working lives and a good income for their retirement. It would seem that in a future Britain where individuals will increasingly depend on private pensions rather than a state minimum, even if women continue to increase their participation levels, the poverty they face in old age will persist.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Janette Webb Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 4. P. 825-844. 
The paper describes the current employment patterns of men and women in local government in Scotland, Wales and England, and examines the gender relations of work during a period of restructuring which is challenging the professionalised welfare bureaucracy and replacing it with a managerialised state informed by market principles. Men are declining as a percentage of employees, alongside decreasing numbers of full-time jobs and increasing part-time and temporary contracts, suggesting some decrease in the relative desirability of public service employment. Nevertheless the challenges to traditional conceptions of paternalistic, bureaucratic welfare have facilitated women's increasing access to professional and managerial grades, but men have continued to dominate most positions of power and authority. The continuing gender divisions of labour, and women's perceptions of a sharper axis of gender conflict surrounding the period of reorganisation into single tier authorities in Scotland and Wales, suggest that it is not simply a matter of time until a rational, functional state eradicates remaining inequalities between the sexes. Neither however can a radical feminist perspective, which treats the state as bound to reproduce women's subordination, account for the degree of progressive change. Instead it is argued that there is genuine indeterminacy in the restructuring process, which, given women's representation and participation, seems likely to disrupt further the legacy of patriarchal relations informing the trajectory of state bureaucracies.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Samantha Punch Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 4. P. 803-823. 
Many studies have examined the household division of labour from a gender perspective, but comparatively few have considered age and the intergenerational distribution of household work. Using empirical evidence from my ethnographic study of rural households in Bolivia, I argue that whilst adult household labour is highly determined by gender roles, children's unpaid household work often cuts across gender stereotypes and does not merely mirror the adult division of labour. Furthermore, this paper argues that it is not sufficient to include only an intergenerational and gender analysis of household divisions of labour but that other intragenerational issues also need to be considered. Drawing on both children's and adults' perspectives, this paper discusses the nature of generation-specific tasks not only by gender but also by age, birth order and sibling composition. Whilst the paper is based on a case study of a rural community in a low-income country, it highlights the importance of the sibling order which has frequently been overlooked or ignored in household divisions of labour throughout the world. The findings show that the allocation of household labour in rural Bolivia is worked out according to generation, age, gender, birth order and sibling composition.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Damian Grimshaw, Kevin G. Ward, Jill Rubery Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 1. P. 25-54. 
This paper explores changes in employment policies and practices that are typically associated with the classical model of the internal labour market. Drawing on documentary information and interviews with managers in four large organisations in the UK, the evidence suggests that many of the traditional pillars of the internal labour market have been dismantled. New policies around training, recruitment, pay, job security and career progression have been introduced in response to pressures and opportunities for change, both internal and external to the organisation. Changes in the external labour market involve a shift in the balance of power between labour and capital, coupled with a weakening of the mechanisms which coordinate and regulate labour market exchange. Within the organisation, there are a range of pressures to transform production, or service delivery, including the restructuring of traditional forms of work organisation, the extension of working-time and changes in organisational structure. This paper analyses evidence of new employer-led market solutions to this range of conflicting pressures. The aim is to highlight the tendency for contradictory outcomes as new policies capitalise on changing external conditions, but at the expense of meeting organisational demands. Also, new policies implemented by individual employers may be unsustainable where, on aggregate, they fail to develop workforce skills or to fulfil career expectations.
Опубликовано на портале: 22-05-2004
Robert M. Blackburn, Bradley Brooks, Jennifer Jarman Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 3. P. 511-538. 
This article presents a new approach to measuring the most important dimension of gender segregation the vertical dimension in quantitative survey data. This, in turn, allows for a reassessment of the view that high levels of gender segregation are synonymous with high levels of social inequality. In order to do this, the article also draws upon significant conceptual developments. Segregation as it is commonly understood is named as overall segregation, and is the resultant of two components, horizontal and vertical segregation, representing difference and inequality separately. This provides a clear approach to measurement. The argument is developed with a case study of the British labour force. The pattern of segregation, in terms of its overall level and its components, varies considerably across sections of the labour force. In terms of inequality, the vertical components measured indicate that British women working full-time are more advantaged than we would expect, and that women working in part-time manual occupations, though facing the greatest relative disadvantage in terms of pay, are actually slightly advantaged over men working in manual occupations in terms of social stratification. Although overall segregation has remained relatively unchanged over the five year period from 1991 to 1996, there have been some significant changes to its components within the various sections of the employed British labour force in that time. By looking at the various sections of the labour force, relative to the labour force as a whole, we can achieve a better understanding of how segregation operates with respect to gender inequalities.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Elizabeth Hill Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 3. P. 443-464. 
Strategies for work life reform amongst informal sector workers in developing countries are currently dominated by resource-based approaches such as the micro-credit movement. This policy framework is predicated upon certain liberal assumptions about individual human action and the relationship between human behaviour and economic development. This article contends that these assumptions are inappropriate when applied to informal sector workers and their economic activities. A focus on the intersubjective conditions of work and economic development, based on the work of Axel Honneth (1995), provides an alternative way of conceptualising the work life experience of marginalised workers and appropriate interventions for economic and social security. An example of a collective strategy implemented by the Self Employed Womens' Association (SEWA) in India, demonstrates the important role that interpersonal recognition plays in activating worker identity and agency to achieve development. The success of SEWA's methodology has implications for how we think about the meaning of development and work life reform in poor countries, suggesting that interventions for economic and social security must engage workers at both the economic and cultural levels at which insecurity, moral injury and social exclusion are produced.
Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Alan Felstead, Nick Jewson, Annie Phizacklea Work, Employment, and Society. 2001.  Vol. 15. No. 2. P. 215-231. 
It is frequently suggested that working at home will be the future of work for many people in the UK and that trends in this direction are already well underway. This paper examines these claims by analysing data from the Labour Force Survey which has, at various times, asked questions about the location of work. Seven key hypotheses are identified, including issues surrounding the extent and growth of working at home, reliance on information and communication technology, prevalence of low pay, average pay rates, gender issues, ethnic minority participation and household composition. The results paint a variegated and complex picture which suggests that those who work at home do not comprise a homogeneous group. The paper in particular highlights differences between non-manual and manual workers, and those who work mainly, partially and sometimes at home.