Changing Working Conditions at the Onset of the Twenty-First Century: Facts from International Datasets

Bettina Kubicek, Christian Korunka, Matea Paškvan, Roman Prem, Cornelia Gerdenitsch

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingsChapter

25 Citations (Scopus)


Modern societies are currently undergoing accelerated social change (see also Chap. 4). In this chapter, we are interested in whether these societal changes influence individual working conditions. More specifically, it is argued that the speeding up of production, consumption, and decision processes due to the implementation of new information and communication technologies (ICTs) and increased international competition confront employees with work intensification and increasing job insecurity. Using data from the European Working Conditions Surveys, we analyze trends in work intensity and job insecurity in Europe from 2000 onwards; using data from the Health and Retirement Study as well as the German Socio-Economic Panel, we also model individual change trajectories from 2000 onwards. The results show that employees differ in the extent to which they are confronted with changes in work intensity and job insecurity. European trend data suggest that work intensification occurred basically in conservative welfare states (i.e., Germany, France, and Spain), but not in the United Kingdom or Finland. Individual change trajectories show that nearly 30 % of German and American workers have experienced an increase in work intensity over the past decade. Less-educated workers are the most affected. Moreover, job insecurity has risen for a majority of employees in Europe and America. Especially, well-educated workers who have thus far been in rather stable employment relations perceived an increase in job insecurity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe impact of ICT on quality of working life
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9789401788540
ISBN (Print)9401788537, 9789401788533
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2014


Dive into the research topics of 'Changing Working Conditions at the Onset of the Twenty-First Century: Facts from International Datasets'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this