Temporary work and neoliberal government policy: evidence from British Columbia, Canada
ABSTRACT We examine the impact of government policy on the incidence of temporary work by analysing the case of British Columbia (BC), Canada. The analysis is based upon the Canadian Labour Force Survey 1997-2004; temporary work is defined as work that is not expected to last for more than 6 months and includes seasonal, fixed-term, casual, and temporary help agency work. A case study of BC provides a valuable opportunity to assess the impacts of neoliberal government policy, designed to increase labour market flexibility, on the extent of temporary work because we are able to compare labour market trends in BC both before and after the reforms introduced in 2001 and to compare BC with other provinces in Canada that were not subject to such large changes in their policy environments. We find that the shift to neoliberal policies in BC led to significant increases in the likelihood of workers finding themselves in temporary employment. We also find that the likelihood of being a temporary worker in BC in the post-policy change period increases relative to all other provinces over the same period. Taken together, these results indicate that government policy is a key determinant of the level of temporary work. As such, the level of temporary work should be seen as a policy-sensitive variable, rather than as a phenomenon determined solely by the exogenous forces of globalization and technological change.
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ABSTRACT: In this comparative study of Finland and Canada, we use representative data to examine work environments in fixed-term and permanent jobs. Results are similar for all workers regardless of whether they are employed on fixed-term or permanent contracts. All workers feel their working hours are inflexible, but feel they have control over the tasks they perform and they have low risk of accident. The only difference is in the feelings of job insecurity: fixed-term workers, in both Finland and Canada, feel more insecure than those in permanent jobs. Our findings indicate that the global trends in flexibility and insecurity permeate all workers.European Journal of Industrial Relations 01/2007; 13(1):109-128. · 0.80 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Casual employment is extensive and has been increasing for more than two decades in Australia. The concept of casual employment used in the Australian context is unusual, but it is directly linked to benefit and rights exclusion within the regulatory framework governing employment. The expansion in casual employment has spread across all sectors, industries and occupations. Casual employment is associated with various forms of insecurity including income and employment insecurity. There are a number of ways in which the insecurity associated with casual employment could be reduced.Social Indicators Research 01/2008; 88(1):161-178. · 1.26 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent debate has argued whether labour market institutions and regulation have been the cause of a rise in unemployment due to rigidities imposed on the free working of labour markets. Labour market institutions generally refer to employment protection policies, unemployment insurance benefits, unions, payroll taxes, the coordination of collective bargaining, and active labour market policies. This paper investigates the strength of the evidence regarding the effects of labour market institutions and regulation on unemployment in OECD countries by analyzing empirical results of various surveys and studies. However, the results varied, which limits the reliability of any policy conclusions on what should be done concerning labour market regulation. The Netherlands and Ireland proved to have strong labour market institutions and low unemployment rates partly due to the coordination of collective bargaining. Also, the United Kingdom and the United States displayed weak labour market institutions and low unemployment rates. Therefore, there is no single model, according to this evidence, which guarantees successful employment performance.11/2004;