Social Policy Attitudes and Social Capital in Europe
Edited by Heikki Ervasti, Jørgen Goul Andersen, Torben Fridberg and Kristen Ringdal
Chapter 3: The Impact of Perceived and Actual Unemployment Benefit Generosity and Unemployment Rates on the Employment Security of Workers
3. The impact of perceived and actual unemployment benefit generosity and unemployment rates on the employment security of workers Heejung Chung and Wim van Oorschot INTRODUCTION Employment security is becoming an increasingly important policy goal in Europe. In the European Commission’s communication on flexicurity, emphasis is given to the move from job security towards employment security (CEC, 2007). Individuals’ perception of employment insecurity is important for various reasons. First, for the successful implementation of flexicurity policies it is important that individuals feel secure. This is due to the fact that individuals who do not feel secure may also be reluctant to accept increased flexibility in the labour market or changes to social security systems. Second, job and employment insecurity has been shown to have dire consequences for one’s mental and physical health as well as well-being (Ashford et al., 1989; Clark et al., 2010; Ferrie, 2001; Hellgren et al., 1999; Näswall and De Witte, 2003; Sverke and Hellgren, 2002). This could then eventually impact labour market performance, not only for individuals and companies, but for society overall. For these reasons, it is important to understand which individuals under which conditions are more susceptible to job and employment insecurities. Although there have been studies concerning the job insecurity of individuals, to date there has been little investigation concerning the employment security of individuals, due to data limitations. For this reason, it is also unclear exactly which individuals perceive their employment status to be insecure, and whether various national policies, especially...
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