Transforming European Employment Policy

Transforming European Employment Policy

Labour Market Transitions and the Promotion of Capability

Edited by Ralf Rogowski, Robert Salais and Noel Whiteside

Since the mid 1990s, the focus of European employment and social policy has shifted from protection to promotion. This book provides a timely analysis of this new form of governance, and the new forms of policy delivery and audit which accompany it.

Chapter 5: Working-time Options Over the Life Course: Challenges and Company Practices

Philip Wotschack

Subjects: law - academic, european law, law and society, social policy and sociology, comparative social policy, economics of social policy, labour policy


Philip Wotschack INTRODUCTION For a number of reasons life course oriented approaches have a specific significance for organising working-time. Among these reasons are current demographic changes and profound transformations in the system of gainful employment and employment biographies. The aim of life course oriented approaches is to create new and better ways for employees to adapt their working time to their changing needs over the life course, in particular to have time for providing care and nursing, and for recreation and further education. This chapter uses empirical examples of long-term or workinglife time accounts to examine whether and under which conditions these approaches are actually implemented in company practice. It also outlines new risks and challenges raised by the recent economic crisis. First, current demands regarding the organisation of working time are outlined and new approaches to life course oriented working-time policy are presented. The opportunities and restrictions associated with individual options for the organisation of the working lifetime are then discussed on the basis of recent research results on the distribution and utilisation of working-life time accounts. The results indicate that there are significant barriers to and difficulties with the implementation of working-life time accounts. They underline the need for an integrated approach to life course oriented working-time organisation that links individual working-time options with working-time reductions and active employment policy at both the company and collective-bargaining and statutory levels. 96 Columns Design XML Ltd / Job: Rogowski-Transforming_European_Employment_Policy / Division: Chap05 /Pg. Position: 1 / Date:...

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