nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2010‒12‒11
five papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Gender Inequality and Job quality in Europe By Peter Muehlau;
  2. Two-Tier Labor Markets in the Great Recession: France vs. Spain By Bentolila, Samuel; Cahuc, Pierre; Dolado, Juan José; Le Barbanchon, Thomas
  3. Does relative income matter for the very poor? - Evidence from rural Ethiopia By Akay, Alpaslan; Martinsson, Peter
  4. Family Job Search, Wage Bargaining, and Optimal Unemployment Insurance By Ek, Susanne; Holmlund, Bertil
  5. Does Inequality lead to Conflict? By Indranil Dutta; Ajit Mishra

  1. By: Peter Muehlau (Department of Sociology, Trinity College Dublin and Institute for International Integration Studies, Trinity College Dublin);
    Abstract: In this paper, I examine whether and to which degree quality of work and employment differ between men and women and how these gender differences are shaped by societal beliefs about ‘gender equality.’ Using data from the 2004 wave of the European Social Survey, I compare the jobs of men and women across a variety of measures of perceived job quality in 26 countries. Key findings are that job quality is gendered: Jobs of men are typically characterized by high training requirements, good promotion opportunities and high levels of job complexity, autonomy and participation. Jobs for women, in contrast, are less likely to pose a health or safety risk or to involve work during antisocial hours. However, contrary to expectation, the job profiles of men and women are not more similar in societies with gender egalitarian norms. While women are relatively more likely to be exposed to health and safety risks, work pressure and demands to work outside regular working time, in more gender-egalitarian societies their work is not, relative to men’s, more skilled, complex or autonomous. Neither do more egalitarian societies provide more opportunities for participation and advancement for women than less egalitarian societies.
    JEL: N A
  2. By: Bentolila, Samuel (CEMFI, Madrid); Cahuc, Pierre (Ecole Polytechnique, Paris); Dolado, Juan José (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid); Le Barbanchon, Thomas (Ecole Polytechnique, Paris)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the strikingly different response of unemployment to the Great Recession in France and Spain. Their labor market institutions are similar and their unemployment rates just before the crisis were both around 8%. Yet, in France, unemployment rate has increased by 2 percentage points, whereas in Spain it has shot up to 19% by the end of 2009. We assess what part of this differential is due to the larger gap between the dismissal costs of permanent and temporary contracts and the less restrictive rules regarding the use of the latter contracts in Spain. Using a calibrated search and matching model, we estimate that about 45% of the surge in Spanish unemployment could have been avoided had Spain adopted French employment protection legislation before the crisis started.
    Keywords: temporary contracts, unemployment, Great Recession
    JEL: H29 J23 J38 J41 J64
    Date: 2010–11
  3. By: Akay, Alpaslan (IZA (Institute for the Study of Labor), 53113, Bonn, Germany); Martinsson, Peter (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: We studied whether relative income has an impact on subjective well-being among extremely poor people. Contrary to the findings in developed countries, we cannot reject the hypothesis that relative income has no impact on subjective well-being in rural areas of northern Ethiopia.<p>
    Keywords: Absolute income; relative income; subjective well-being
    JEL: D10 I31 I32
    Date: 2010–12–02
  4. By: Ek, Susanne (Uppsala Center for Labor Studies); Holmlund, Bertil (Uppsala Center for Labor Studies)
    Abstract: In this paper we develop an equilibrium search and matching model where two-person families as well as singles participate in the labor market. We show that equilibrium entails wage dispersion among equally productive risk-averse workers. Marital status as well as spousal labor market status matters for wage outcomes. In general, employed members of two-person families receive higher wages than employed singles. The model is applied to a welfare analysis of alternative unemployment insurance systems, while recognizing the role of spousal employment as a partial substitute for public insurance. The optimal system involves benefit differentiation based on marital status as well as spousal labor market status
    Keywords: Job search; wage bargaining; wage differentials; unemployment; unemployment insurance
    JEL: J31 J64 J65
    Date: 2010–04–08
  5. By: Indranil Dutta; Ajit Mishra
    Abstract: This paper presents a simple model to show how distributional concerns can engender social conflict. They have a two period model, where the cost of conflict is endogenous in the sense that parties involved have full control over how much conflict they can create. We find that anticipated future inequality plays a crucial role in determining the level of conflict in the current period. The model also provides an explanation for why similar levels of inequality may exhibit drastically different levels of conflict. Further, they argue that the link between inequality and conflict may be non-monotonic. [Research Paper No. 2005/34]
    Keywords: conflict, wealth inequality, Nash bargaining
    Date: 2010

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