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Demanding Work:
The Paradox of Job Quality in the Affluent Economy
Francis Green

Book Description | Reviews
Chapter 1 [HTML] or [PDF format]


List of Illustrations xi
Preface: The Quest for "More and Better Jobs" xv
Acknowledgments xxi
Abbreviations xxiii

Chapter One: Assessing Job Quality in the Affluent Economy 1
The Paradox of Job Quality at the Millennium 1
Revealing a History of the Present 3
The Changing World and the Everyday Workplace 5
What Makes a Good Job? 8
An Interdisciplinary Perspective on Job Quality 13
From Quality of Work Life to "Quality in Work"? 19
How to Measure a Good Job: Surveys of the Quality of Work Life 22

Chapter Two: The Quality of Work Life in the "Knowledge Economy" 24
An Optimistic Outlook 24
Theories of the Changing Demand for Skill 26
The Concept and Measurement of Skill 28
The Rising Level of Skill 29
Skills Polarization? 35
Skill, Technology, and Work Organization 37
The Skills Balance 40
Conclusion: A Mixed Verdict 42

Chapter Three: Late Twentieth-Century Trends in Work Effort 44
Working Hours, Work Effort, and the Quality of Work Life 44
The Concept and Measurement of Work Effort 47
Work Intensification in Britain 50
Work Intensification in Europe, Australia, and the United States 58
Any Objections? 61
Conclusion: A Summary of Effort Trends 64

Chapter Four: Accounting for Work Intensification 66
The Paradox of Work Intensification in the Affluent Economy 66
The Supply of Effort 67
"Amber Lights" and Effort-Biased Technological Change 69
Big Brother 77
The Changing Balance of Power 78
The Stick, the Carrot, and the Smooth Sell 81
Conclusion: The Role of Technological Change 84
Appendix: Multivariate Analyses 86

Chapter Five: Workers' Discretion 94
The Importance of Influence 94
The Workers' Voice 98
Theory about How Discretion Is Changing 99
Trends in Discretion 102
Conclusion: An Incomplete Account 107

Chapter Six: The Wages of Nations 111
Wages and the Fairness of Wages 111
The Growth of Average Wages 112
The Fairness of Wages 119
Conclusion: Alright for Some 123

Chapter Seven: Workers' Risk 126
Is This an Age of Uncertainty in the Workplace? 126
The Concept and Measurement of Job Insecurity 130
Workers' Perceptions of the Trend and Distribution of Job Risk 131
Objective Proxies for Risk 142
Conclusion: Risk and the Quality of Work Life 146

Chapter Eight: Workers' Well-Being 150
A Question of Well-Being 150
A Digression on the Notion of Subjective Well-Being 151
A Picture of the Changing Well-Being of Workers in the Industrialized World 153
Well-Being and the Quality of Jobs 160
Conclusion: The Quality of Work Life Is Strained 166
Appendix: Multivariate Analyses 168

Chapter Nine: Summary and Implications for Policy on the Quality of Work Life 170
The Rewards and Demands of Work in the Affluent Economy 170
Policy Implications 178
Data Set Appendix 185

Notes 193
References 203
Index of Names 219
General Index 223

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File created: 4/21/2017

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