Partner effects on labour market participation and job level: opposing mechanisms
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SourceWork, Employment and Society, 23, 4, (2009), pp. 635-654
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ RSCR SOC
Work, Employment and Society
SubjectInequality Cohesion Rationalization; Ongelijkheid Cohesie Rationalisatie
This study investigates to what extent a partner’s career resources affect labour market par ticipation and job level. Theories on this topic predict opposing par tner effects: economic theory expects a negative relationship due to financial incentives, whereas a positive relationship can be expected from a social capital point of view. In order to test these opposing mechanisms properly, (a) labour market outcomes are decomposed into labour market participation and job level, and (b) a historical perspective is introduced. Large scale labour force surveys conducted by Statistics Netherlands from 1977 onwards show that a partner’s career resources have a negative influence on working hours and a positive influence on job level. Over birth cohorts, the negative effect on working hours has become stronger for males and weaker for females, whereas the positive effect on job level has decreased for both men and women.
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