The Structural Bases of Postindustrial Employment

Gøsta Esping‐Andersen

in Social Foundations of Postindustrial Economies

Published in print February 1999 | ISBN: 9780198742005
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599163 | DOI:
 The Structural Bases of Postindustrial Employment

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It is argued that there are compelling reasons why we should be heading towards a fundamental incompatibility between the cherished goal of equality and the equally cherished goal of full employment. If this is so, we shall have left the epoch of the democratic class struggle and, possibly, regressed to a world dominated by the ‘social question’ and social polarization. These compelling reasons can be summarized under two labels: the first is globalization and technology, both of which undoubtedly enrich all nations, although in the process, they also accelerate industrial decline and contribute to unemployment; the second is tertiarization, which favours those with human and social capital, but which also may cause stagnation because of low productivity. In any case, both reasons point in the same direction: the less skilled are likely to become losers—be it as unemployed, or as low‐paid workers. The different sections of the chapter are: Jobs and Unemployment Trends Across Welfare Regimes; The Dilemmas of Globalization and Technological Change; Dilemmas of the New Service Economy; Identifying Services; Service Sectors; Service Occupations; Lousy Jobs or Outsiders? — post‐industrial job trends towards service job growth; The Cost‐Disease and Service Expansion; The Micro‐Foundations of Post‐industrial Employment; and The New Keynesian Household.

Keywords: employment; equality; full employment; globalization; industrial decline; Keynesian household; low‐paid workers; post‐industrial employment; service economy; service expansion; service occupations; service sectors; social polarization; social question; technology; tertiarization; unemployment; welfare regimes

Chapter.  8269 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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