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Sharon C. Bolton and Knut Laaser

This chapter suggests stepping back to engage with classic moral economy approaches for a critical analysis and evaluation of labour, work and employment. The concept of moral economy has a rich heritage of analysing the dialectical relationship between economic practices, communities and people in pre-market and capitalist societies. The chapter goes on to apply a moral economy framework to an exploration of flexible employment strategies, at the micro- and meso- (social relationships in workplaces, employer strategies) and macro- (institutions, employment policies) levels.