Journal Article

The organizational governance of work relationships between employment and self-employment

Ulrike Muehlberger and Sonia Bertolini

in Socio-Economic Review

Published on behalf of Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics

Volume 6, issue 3, pages 449-472
Published in print July 2008 | ISSN: 1475-1461
Published online December 2007 | e-ISSN: 1475-147X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ser/mwm026
The organizational governance of work relationships between employment and self-employment

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Moral Philosophy
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Welfare Economics
  • Political Economy
  • Economic Sociology

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

This paper analyses work relationships on the border between employment and self-employment and the consequences of making use of these new forms of work, especially on the side of firms. We study the complexity and variety of dependent forms of outsourcing by comparing the firm-internal solutions adopted to solve the arising control–flexibility dilemma in two industries (insurance, business services) embedded in two different institutional contexts (Italy, Austria). This paper shows that employers have established informal relational contracts that, in combination with formal contracts, reduce the threat of opportunism while simultaneously allowing a certain amount of control over the worker. We highlight the fact that a hierarchal structure returns to the relationship between worker and employer through the mechanisms of control and dependency. Finally, we stress that social relationships complement the market mechanism through the creation of assurance and trust as well as the development of specific configurations of social networks (i.e. network and temporal embeddedness).

Keywords: self-employment; outsourcing; employment relationship; relational contracts; J21 labour force and employment; size; and structure; K31 labour law; L22 firm organization and market structure: markets vs. hierarchies; vertical integration; subsidiaries

Journal Article.  9262 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy ; Corporate Social Responsibility ; Welfare Economics ; Political Economy ; Economic Sociology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.