Jim Been and Olaf van Vliet (Leiden University) analyze the variation in early retirement across 13 European countries. The results of this study show that for men, part-time employment reduces early labor market withdrawal.
Although the participation rates of older workers have been rising for both men and women in many European countries, the participation rates are still low compared to those of prime-age workers. One prominent explanation for the low participation rates of older people is that once older people are unemployed or receive disability benefits, relatively few of them start working again before they reach the statutory retirement age. As a result, such social insurance programs function in practice quite often as an arrangement to smoothen the transition from work to retirement.
Another class of factors is the rise of non-standard forms of employment. Older people may opt for part-time work and self-employment because it provides flexibility in working hours such that these types of employment may be used as gradual retirement mechanism. Whether non-standard forms of employment can explain the cross-national variation in labor market participation of older workers has not been analyzed thus far. In this study, Jim and Olaf analyze the variation in early labor market withdrawal across 13 European countries over the period 1995-2008.
The empirical analysis finds that for men, part-time employment reduces early labor market withdrawal. The results suggest that this is mainly because of the possibility to reduce working hours as we find that specifically voluntary part-time employment induces labor force participation at older ages. This relationship is less strong for women. With regard to self-employment, our results provide no evidence for substitution effects between self-employment among older workers and early retirement. Furthermore, they find that unemployment among older workers contributes to early labor market withdrawal.
The policy implication of these findings would be that facilitating part-time work contributes to higher labor market participation among older workers. However, facilitating part-time work could also induce a reduction in working hours among persons who would otherwise have worked full-time. Interestingly, the analysis suggests that increases in part-time employment did not reduce working hours. Instead, the results even suggest positive effects.
For further info: Jim Been and Olaf van Vliet (2014) Early retirement across Europe: Does non-standard employment increase participation of older workers? Netspar Discussion Paper 10/2014-044.
The NEUJOBS dissemination team has now made available the work product of the London event on “Ageing Society in Europe and UK” (15 September 2014), which can be downloaded from the NEUJOBS (FP7) and OSE websites. Available documents include:
• Johannes Geyer, Maciej Lis and Hilmar Schneider’s PowerPoint presentations;
• The discussion notes presented by Bill Wells;
• An article about the London conference published in Europolitics (by Sophie Petitjean): ‘Demographic change takes preparation’ (16/09/2014)
• Tweets on the event: #NEUJOBS
The NEUJOBS dissemination team launched the NEUJOBS book “Let’s get to Work! The Future of Labour in Europe” (8 September 2014). We have made available the different outputs of this event, which can be downloaded from the NEUJOBS (FP7) and OSE websites:
- The book can be downloaded for free from the CEPS website
- A video, with short interviews and impression of the event;
- The PowerPoint presentation by Miroslav Beblavy (CEPS): key messages from the book
- Discussant’s notes, presented by Günther Schmid (WZB);
- The Labour Market Report of the EU’s Employment Committee, which was referred to by Tom Bevers;
- Tweets on #NEUJOBS
Miroslav Beblavy and Bart Vanhercke
In the 20th century, prognostics for global economic progress were good; Kuznets theory (and curve) posited that income inequality would automatically decrease in advanced phases of capitalist development, and Robert Solow’s 1956 analysis of the conditions to achieve a “balanced growth path” proposed a growth trajectory along which output, incomes, profits, wages, capital and asset prices would progress at the same pace. This meant that every social group would benefit from growth to the same degree, with no major deviations from the norm. But since the 1970s, statistics have started to reveal how income inequality has increased significantly in the rich countries, especially the United States. Continue reading
The NEUJOBS FP7 dissemination partners are happy to invite you to the launch of the book ‘Let’s get to Work! The Future of Labour in Europe’, which will take place on Monday 8th September 2014 at CEPS in Brussels.
Keynote speakers Miroslav Beblavy (CEPS), Günther Schmid (WZB Berlin) and Tom Bevers (Employment Committee) will address the most striking research findings that were brought together in the context of the NEUJOBS FP7 project. The panel, facilitated by Terry Martin (journalist & communications advisor), will engage in a discussion with the audience about the implications of the findings for the future of labour in Europe. Continue reading
As part of the NEUJOBS project, the European Social Observatory (OSE, Brussels) and the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) are pleased to invite you to a one-day conference:
Ageing Society in Europe and UK: Employment and Policy Challenges, London, 15th September 2014; 12:00pm – 5.30pm.
This conference aims to bring together researchers, practitioners, and policy makers to discuss the consequences of ageing on employment, labour demand and supply, skills, working conditions and gender issues. It is an opportunity for European scholars and national stakeholders to meet and debate key strategies for dealing with ageing. Leading researchers from the NEUJOBS project will present their understanding of present and future challenges to European labour markets. Continue reading
From today, on NEUJOBS website, you can read the latest policy brief by Iain Begg. A short interesting piece of research where findings from different domains and the results of an intense discussion with high-level policy makers come together.
Here an extract: “It is a statement of the obvious that decarbonising the EU economy will take time and will require substantial investment. However, it is clear that Europe needs higher investment, notably from the macroeconomic perspective of boosting demand, and that there will be benefits not just from rendering the economy more sustainable but also in creating economic activity and jobs. Part of the necessary investment will, as several contributors to the workshop emphasised, have to be in skills and human capital. Nevertheless, various indirect effects have to be taken into account, such as the impact on public revenues as (heavily-taxed) fossil fuels decline to be replaced by other energy sources, especially if the latter attract subsidies.
It can be easy to postpone necessary energy transformations, especially if short-term considerations dominate policy thinking. An energy transition will, unavoidably, be disruptive; but the aim should be for it to be creatively destructive (in the Schumpeterian sense of fostering innovation), rather than just negatively so. In this regard, green jobs are alluring for politicians. They offer the prospect of a narrative for energy policy that comes over as positive and caring.”
You can continue reading here.
Nearly halfway through the Europe 2020 Strategy, an analysis of the strategies pursued and results obtained thus far is presented by the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) in the 2014 edition of the ‘Benchmarking Working Europe‘ report. The publication raises important questions such as: is the EU still suffering the consequences of the economic crisis triggered by financial crisis, or have the post-2010 austerity measures been effective in repairing the damage? If the latter is the case, how should policies be reoriented?
In 2009, after the beginning of the crisis, the EU showed some recovery through public spending intended to counter the falling activity from the private sector. After 2010, however, the EU GDP significantly diverged from the USA and the rest of the world, falling back into depression. At this point, the EU swapped its liberal spending policies for new austerity policies: a number of Member States, unable to sell bonds, became dependent on the IMF, the EU and the ECB (Troika), who imposed deficit reduction conditions (dubbed ‘internal devaluation’).
Last week, an article in the New York Times focused on the difficulty of economic recovery for Europe’s more ‘troubled’ economies as lending rates continue to be very high. The amount of loans that small- and medium-sized companies get granted by banks is more than 20 percent lower in Greece than in Germany for example, while interest rates on a loan for 1 million euro or less are on average are 3 percent higher in Greece and Portugal than in France and Germany. This shows the struggle that these countries have to reach higher growth levels and eventually to convergence in prosperity within the Euro Area.
It is not just high borrowing costs for current SMEs that hamper economic recovery: a lack of business starts is just as much of a concern. Many find this to be an important driver for economic growth and research by Horsewood and Dol (2014), as part of the NEUJOBS project, shows that the housing market has an important impact on new business starts. It shows that home ownership appears to discourage starting a new business. The amount of investment that is used to obtain a mortgage cannot be used towards opening new businesses and therefore this has a negative effect on new business starts. Higher levels of mortgage debt are therefore associated with lower business starts. In that sense, the slow recovery of the European housing market can be seen as a good thing for the starts of new businesses.
In this sophisticated paper, six CEPS colleagues (Arno Behrens, Caroline Coulie, Fabio Genoese, Monica Alessi, Julian Wieczorkiewicz and Christian Egenhofer) establish a methodology for analysing employment impacts of changes in the composition of the primary (fossil) fuel mix and the electricity mix that are projected to occur in the context of a new socio-ecological transition away from fossil fuels. The results show that decarbonisation in the context of a new SET can lead to substantial employment creation, particularly in the long term. Continue reading