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We introduce a themed collection of articles on approaches to configuring a Green New Deal as a response to the current capitalist crisis marked by ecological breakdown, economic stagnation and growing inequality. The Green New Deal is a contested political project, with pro-market, right-wing nationalist, Keynesian, democratic socialist and ecosocialist variants. Critiques of the Green New Deal include pragmatic queries as the feasibility of implementation, and theoretical challenges from the right regarding reliance on state forms and from the left regarding efforts to ameliorate capitalism. They also include concerns about technocratic bias and complaints about lack of meaningful consultation with Indigenous peoples on proposals for large-scale shifts in land use. Debates over the ideological orientation, political strategy and implementation of the Green New Deal must now account for the economic and employment impacts of COVID.
Proposals for development of ‘green jobs’ emerged when environmentalists, labour organisations and political economists recognised the need for economic restructuring to reduce climate change. Current proposals for a Green New Deal go further by putting additional emphasis on fiscal stimulus, ‘just transition’, reducing socio-economic inequalities, and political empowerment. This article analyses the development of this more comprehensive policy approach, its rationale, the constraints it would face and its prospects in the Australian context.
This study applies a methodology used by De Henau and Himmelweit (2013) to study resource allocation in Australian mixed-sex couple households. Using 18 waves of data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia survey and by means of fixed effects estimations, the study identifies how men’s and women’s contributions via paid and unpaid work influences their satisfaction with the financial situation (SWFS) within households. Employment status is used to proxy each partner’s contribution to household resources. The results reveal that paid contributions through full-time employment have a strong role in determining SWFS. This is a source of gender difference because Australian men are much more likely to be engaged in full-time employment than women. Most often, for both men and women, unpaid contributions to household resources (proxied by less than full-time employment) has a detrimental effect on their own SWFS, but smaller effects on their partner’s SWFS. These results imply that gender asymmetry in paid and unpaid contributions to household resources contributes to the reproduction of gender inequalities within Australian households. The results add external validity to the relevance of De Henau and Himmelweit’s (2013) analysis of these issues.
Understanding young people’s employment experiences and transitions gives a greater appreciation of the nature of precarious work. Drawing on interview data with 30 participants from research conducted in 2011–2012, this article examines young people’s experiences of employment in the Illawarra region of New South Wales, Australia. Levels of unemployment and under-employment above the national average reflect two decades of globalised restructuring of the steel, coal and manufacturing industries which, together with agriculture, have historically been the region’s economic base. The growth of service and knowledge industries has been accompanied by new, ‘atypical’ or insecure work patterns. The interview data indicate that young people’s diverse experiences of transition and choice in leaving school, commencing training or further education, and entering the labour market are accompanied by a range of understandings of employment and precarious work. These experiences highlight the difficulties, divisions and contradictions in a changing regional labour market and suggest how the ideologies and practices of neo-liberalism shape and are embedded in regional labour markets and precarious work more generally.
The article sheds light on the proposition that labour is a commodity by considering from a fundamental theoretical perspective whether labour is subject to the same market forces which apply to commodities in general in capitalist economies. It suggests that no spontaneous competitive force exists within capitalism that would adjust labour demand to its supply, in contrast to the adaptation of supply to the demand for commodities in general. This result is argued without reference to assumptions about inflexibilities or impediments in labour or other markets, or institutional features peculiar to ‘the labour market’. Its explanation of why labour markets do not clear is at odds with a core tenet underlying orthodox economic theory of the last century, which has acted as a fundamental benchmark for most theorising about labour to the present day. Rejection of this tenet is at the heart of a heterodox explanation of unemployment, the real wage and income distribution in capitalist economies.
This article considers the national industrial relations policy aspects of the economic recovery agenda in Australia, in the context of the theory of monopsonistic competition, employment and productivity. This framework acknowledges the employer ability to exercise discretion in the setting of wages. The proposed reforms were unlikely to lead to any increase in economic growth through higher labour productivity or employment. Proposed agendas in enterprise bargaining, greenfields agreements and award simplification (as well as union regulation), would principally have reduced labour costs and incomes. In many circumstances, allowing employers to offer lower wages may lead to fewer filled jobs, higher labour turnover and absenteeism and lower employment. The incentive on employers to improve labour productivity may fall. Proposals to more energetically punish wage theft may have had the opposite effects, but these were abandoned by the government despite support from the other parties. In the end, the only part of the reform agenda to pass Parliament concerned changes to the definition and treatment of casual employees, but casual employment grew strongly before the Bill took effect, the crisis the Bill was meant to solve eased before the Bill was passed, and even if successful the changes would have done little to boost labour productivity.
Under what circumstances can minimum wages increase without adverse effects on employment levels? In 31 Chinese provinces between 2004 and 2015, the employment effect of a minimum wage depended on the minimum wage level, foreign direct investment, per capita gross domestic product and labour productivity. A minimum wage increase reduced hiring as foreign direct investment inflow rose, regardless of the amount of investment. Any positive employment effect of a minimum wage increase was mitigated by per capita gross domestic product growth, except when per capita gross domestic product was above the average. Above-average labour productivity enhancement significantly mitigated the adverse employment effect of the minimum wage. Employers responded to a rising minimum wage by increasing hiring when the geometric growth rates of the minimum wage and foreign direct investment for a particular province within a period of time were above the overall average across provinces. However, they scrutinised both annual and overall economic growth within a time period when making hiring decisions in the face of minimum wage adjustments. An inverted U-shape relationship between minimum wages and employment suggest a maximum threshold value for the minimum wage. Thus, government policy measures should foster short-term and long-term economic growth, to facilitate employment creation when minimum wages increase.
There is a substantial body of research that recognises the importance of analysing regional characteristics in employment and labour relations that occur in a given geographical context. However, this phenomenon has been scarcely studied from a spatial approach. This article uses a spatio-temporal panel data model to examine the spatial interactions between the gender employment gap and, some labour and socioeconomic characteristics of 727 municipalities of Andalusia, Spain, for the period 2012–2016. The results show that due to spatial diffusion mechanisms, a spatial spillover effect occurs in both the gender gap in employment and in some of the labour and socioeconomic characteristics considered. These findings may be extended to other geographic areas and can be of use for the implementation of regional policies aimed at narrowing the gender employment gap.
While debts are widely used financial tools, few longitudinal studies investigating potential causal links between debts and mental wellbeing exist among older adults. Older adults, particularly those not employed, are less likely to have increasing incomes to help them pay off their debts. This study investigates whether older adults with non-mortgage debts in three different labour market states have lower mental wellbeing and, separately, whether it is likely that reducing their debts helps to improve mental wellbeing. Using the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, the study focuses on the English context, which is particularly interesting due to the high levels of, and a unique policy approach to, private indebtedness.
The results indicate that people with debts have lower mental wellbeing (more depressive symptoms and lower quality of life) in all categories, but the mental pain linked to debts is stronger for people who are jobless (not working, not retired). The analysis from a causal perspective suggests that getting rid of debts may reduce depressive symptoms among people who are jobless but may also improve quality of life among the retired and employed. Both these findings suggest that mental health services should work closely with debt advice when needed.
This chapter covers three main areas of activity: the labour market, education, and leisure. These three areas all overlap and interact within the scope of the human life course and have important implications for health and socio-economic outcomes. They are also interdependent with the material factors and the social networks examined in other chapters. All are inequitably distributed and are important for the health and well-being of the general population. People with mental health conditions are disadvantaged in all three of these areas, especially those with severe and enduring conditions, and work, leisure, and education can all play a role in causing and perpetuating mental ill-health. Factors that are integral to the mental health condition may contribute to excluding people from these important activities, but there are additional extrinsic factors that also play a part in this exclusion. The existence of such external factors supports the application of a social model of disability for people with mental health conditions and questions the assumptions of an approach that views exclusion solely in terms of a person’s ‘illness’. This has implications for the rehabilitation and the personal and social recovery of people with enduring mental health conditions.
After nearly two decades of rising wages for those in the unskilled sectors of China's economy, in the mid-2010s employment and wages in China began to experience new polarizing trends. Using data from the National Bureau of Statistics of China, this paper examines trends in multiple sectors and subeconomies of China, revealing the substantial rise of employment in informal, low-skilled services as well as the steady decline of wage growth in the informal subeconomy. At the same time, we find that although employment growth in the formal subeconomy is relatively moderate, wage growth in high-skilled services is steadily rising. These two trends pose a challenge for China, presenting a new and uncertain period of economic change.
Employment and income are important determinants of mental health (MH), but the extent that unemployment effects are mediated by reduced income is unclear. We estimated the total effect (TE) of unemployment on MH and the controlled direct effect (CDE) not acting via income.
We included adults 25–64 years from nine waves of the UK Household Longitudinal Study (n = 45 497/obs = 202 297). Unemployment was defined as not being in paid employment; common mental disorder (CMD) was defined as General Health Questionnaire-12 score ≥4. We conducted causal mediation analysis using double-robust marginal structural modelling, estimating odds ratios (OR) and absolute differences for effects of unemployment on CMD in the same year, before (TE) and after (CDE) blocking the income pathway. We calculated percentage mediation by income, with bootstrapped standard errors.
The TE of unemployment on CMD risk was OR 1.66 (95% CI 1.57–1.76), with 7.09% (6.21–7.97) absolute difference in prevalence; equivalent CDEs were OR 1.55 (1.46–1.66) and 6.08% (5.13–7.03). Income mediated 14.22% (8.04–20.40) of the TE. Percentage mediation was higher for job losses [15.10% (6.81–23.39)] than gains [8.77% (0.36–17.19)]; it was lowest for those 25–40 years [7.99% (−2.57 to 18.51)] and in poverty [2.63% (−2.22 to 7.49)].
A high proportion of the short-term effect of unemployment on MH is not explained by income, particularly for younger people and those in poverty. Population attributable fractions suggested 16.49% of CMD burden was due to unemployment, with 13.90% directly attributable to job loss rather than resultant income changes. Similar analytical approaches could explore how this differs across contexts, by other factors, and consider longer-term effects.
Chapter 1 tackles ‘foreigners’ defined as such on the basis of their birthplace, as recorded in naval crew musters. Statistical analysis of a sample of 4,392 seamen who served in extra-European stations shows that the proportion of foreign-born men rose between the beginning and the end of the French Wars, likely reflecting the increased demand for manpower. Nearly half of them came not from British imperial or ex-imperial territories, but from continental Europe. Questioning the meaningfulness of categorisations by birthplace, however, the chapter also deploys them as a working hypothesis. The results show that Irish-born, rather than foreign-born, seamen displayed the most distinctive demographic patterns, being on average the oldest but disproportionately employed as ‘landsmen’ – the least skilled and lowest-paid rating. Being born abroad affected the likelihood of promotion to petty officer, and in some cases to able seaman, but it otherwise mattered little in determining a man’s position aboard. Rating was also independent of cultural capital, crudely measured through estimated group numeracy. Overall, a line sharply drawn between the men born in the British Isles and Ireland and those born abroad is a relatively poor predictor of demographic or employment differences.
Chapter 7 reassesses our understanding of the social history of naval crews, by looking at their members’ degrees of geographical displacement. Being foreign ‘by provenance’, a transnational immigrant or refugee, conferred completely different weight and meaning to the terms of service: wages and victuals were evaluated by comparison with other fleets, and pensions and family remittances were only possible for those resident within British administrative reach. This chapter then reframes the historiographical debate on naval living and pay standards, situating the Navy in a transnational seafaring labour market. Some motivations for enlistment also elude the relatively neat dichotomy between ‘volunteer’ and ‘pressed man’ that has dominated British naval historiography: being ‘loaned’ by another monarch, or enslaver; escaping a British war prison, or enslavement; exile and contested loyalties. These personal circumstances only become visible when we look at Navy crews as ‘motley crews’, social and cultural mixtures of mobile and uprooted individuals often transcending the traditional image of the British ‘Jack Tar’, and very different from the modern model of citizen-serviceman. Labels of foreignness based on birthplace, subjecthood, or cultural difference were easily bypassed by naval efficiency and manpower maximisation, but the material aspects of social and geographical displacement were not.
Becoming an Archaeologist: A Guide to Professional Pathways is an engaging handbook on career paths in archaeology. It outlines the process of getting a job in archaeology, including various career options, the training required, and how to get positions in the academic, commercial, government and charity sectors. This new edition has been substantially revised and updated. The coverage has been expanded to include many more examples of archaeological lives and livelihoods from dozens of countries around the world. It also has more interviews, with in-depth analyses of the career paths of over twenty different archaeologists working around the world. Data on the demographics of archaeologists has also been updated, as have sections on access to and inclusion in archaeology. The volume also includes revised and updated appendices and a new bibliography. Written in an accessible style, the book is essential reading for anyone interested in a career in archaeology in the twenty-first century.
We provide selective account of how and why the share of Asia in the world economy has more than quadrupled in the past half-century. In 1970, Asia (excluding Japan) accounted for around 9 per cent of the world economy. At the turn of the twenty-first century, this had climbed to 18 per cent and today exceeds 40 per cent. Asian growth has occurred rapidly regardless of political system, institutional arrangements or policy cocktails. We illustrate how far the Asian economies have come and how far they have left to go to attain the living standards of Europe or North America. For example, in India and China income per capita went from just under 5 per cent of the US level each to around 11 per cent and 28 per cent, respectively from 1970 to 2020. The main drivers of growth have been the accumulation of capital and labour along with improvements in the quality of the labour force. We also concentrate on the features that are both a cause and a consequence of the connections world. These include export-led growth, the role of the state, political systems and economic institutions, but also inequality. In so doing, we set the scene for the chapters that follow.
Asian governments focus on growth but also worry about employment; they need to create many new jobs just to keep employment stable. Moreover, most employment remains in the informal sector. Those jobs are generally fragile, low wage and low productivity. While many of the business groups that figure in the connections world also create productive and well-remunerated jobs, these are limited in number. Boosting formality and, with it, productivity – a clarion call of almost all Asian governments for decades – has largely failed to materialise. Further, the entrenchment of the connections world has also helped ensure that little progress has been made in bringing in more effective responses to employment risk. Neither government nor companies have a strong interest in promoting arms-length methods of dealing with such risk, preferring to rely on discretion. Jobs can be created, and their destruction tempered, as a result of interactions or even haggling between politicians and employers. The bulk of workers found in the informal economy are excluded. And the modernisation of welfare systems – now feasible given the income levels of many Asian countries – remains stalled.
Climate change is increasing the frequency of extreme weather events, such as drought and heat waves. In this paper, we assess the impact of drought and high temperatures on the employment outcomes of working-age individuals in South Africa between 2008 and 2017. We merge high-resolution weather data with detailed individual-level survey data on labor market outcomes, and estimate causal impacts using a fixed effects framework. We find that increases in the occurrence of drought reduce overall employment. These effects are concentrated in the tertiary sector, amongst informal workers, and in provinces with a higher reliance on tourism. Taken together, our results suggest that the impacts of climate change will be felt unequally by South Africa's workers.
Evidence shows unemployment as a negative impact factor on a variety of health outcomes. Regarding mental health, unemployment is considered one of the most consolidated risk factors for morbidity. This relationship is considered bi-directional. Prevention and wellness promotion are essential guidelines for mental health providers.
To describe the work status in a sample of patients with anxiety disorders after two types of group mindfulness-based interventions in the MER-ACT project.
A descriptive analysis was conducted on work status before and 6 months after two types of mindfulness-based interventions. The group treatments were Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and a Mindfulness-based Emotional Regulation intervention, during 8 weeks, guided by two Clinical Psychology residents. The employment change was calculated (percentage of change from unemployed or temporary incapacity to employed).
The work status of participants of the sample (n = 40), before and 6 months after interventions, were employed: 55% vs. 60%; temporary incapacity: 12.5% vs. 12.5%; unemployed: 25% vs. 20% and others: 7.5% vs. 7.5%. In the same period, the unemployment rate in the Spanish general population was from 13.8% to 14.5%. After 6 months the percentage of change on work status was 25% (15% improved their employment situation).
Preliminary results show worse work status of participants compared to the Spanish general population. It is recommendable to include well-established risk factor measurements to establish the effectiveness of interventions in mental health. More research is required to determine the impact of interventions on the employment status.
Schizophrenia spectrum disorders may severely limit ability to achieve and maintain gainful employment of affected working-age individuals.
Assess the employment status in patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders treated with long acting injectable paliperidone palmitate after the switch from oral antipsychotics.
A single centre mirror image design study of 115 patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorder was conducted in a tertiary level psychiatric hospital. Data were collected for period of 12 months prior toand 12 months after switching from oral antipsychotic to long acting injectable paliperidone.Employment status for 6 enrolled patients was missing.
Mean age of enrolled patients was 38,4±11,6 years. Of the 109 patients analyzed for employment status, 44,4% remained employed for 12 months after switching to long acting injectable paliperidone while 4,6% patients changed their employment status from unemployed to employed after the switch. No patient changed their employment status from employed to unemployed after the switch. 9,2% patients were already retired at the beginning of study period and 5,5% of patients maintained their student status. 36,7% patients remained unemployed for the whole study period. The correlation between employment status of employed and unemployed patients and duration of illness was borderline significant with p=0,049.
The data from this study suggest that use of long acting injectable paliperidone contributed to preservation of working ability of working-age patients suffering from schizophrenia spectrum disorders.