Over the last 2 decades or so, both levels and structures of employment and unemployment have changed substantially. Looking at total employment figures and the overall employment rate one can see a major increase since the mids. In parallel, unemployment declined dramatically since , even during the crisis period — That also means that massive and apparently persistent unemployment increases in the mids and early s could be reversed.
Unemployment rates, —, in selected European countries. Source: Eurostat.
Employment rates still vary significantly between genders; however, based on headcounts, the gap between women and men has closed significantly during the s. Women contributed massively to the overall increase in the employment rate, while male employment rates have been stagnant at best. Women are now much better integrated into the labour market than they were in the s.
However, this is not the case for full-time equivalent contracts. Here, the huge increase in different forms of part-time work, which is largely occupied by women, is related to a persistent gender gap that arises with a more substantial labour market participation of females.
Employment creation in Germany has been most beneficial to those with medium and higher educational levels where there have been some significant increases in jobs in the s. Full- time equivalent employment rates of men and women. Employment rates by age group.
Employment rates by educational level. Unemployment and long-term unemployment. The group-specific pattern is most pronounced with unemployment by educational level where there is a substantially and persistently higher risk of unemployment faced by low-skilled workers. Lack of skills is probably the most important risk of exclusion in the German labour market. While overall employment grew, a mixed picture of the German labour market developments emerges. This can be analysed more in depth by looking at different forms of standard employment and atypical work.
It is now only slightly below the level of the mids. At the same time, particularly in the early s, Germany experienced an increase in the number of different types of non-standard employment along with a steady decline in inactivity see Fig. Therefore, the overall employment increase was accompanied by an increase in the share of non-standard contracts and a relative decline of standard employment only if measured as a share in total employment.
Still, standard employment, defined as permanent full-time work, is the most prominent type of contract in Germany, as Fig. Along with the growth of low pay, this more widespread use of non-standard contracts is a major feature of labour market duality in Germany. Particularly striking is the massive increase in the number of part-time workers covered by social insurance and regulations that standardize working conditions.
The latter can be attributed to a peculiar emerging employment pattern in some private services in reaction to the availability and expansion of the Minijob arrangement. Increased dynamism is behind the development of temporary agency work, although it is still a quite small segment of the labour market with about 2. The expansion of agency work is mostly due to substantial reforms and related restructuring of companies in the manufacturing sector since the mids.
Quite notably, finally, is the increase in the number of self-employed people without employees.
These developments can hardly be understood without taking into account the sectoral and occupational changes that occurred over the last 10—15 years see also Eichhorst et al. Some sectors rely heavily on marginal part-time work private households, accommodation and food service, other services , fixed-term contracts health and social services, but also education , freelance arts and professional activities or temporary agency work classified as a separate sector here.
Source: Federal Statistical Office.
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Furthermore, we can see from the scatter plot in Fig. This holds for customer service clerks occupation 42 in ISCO , salespersons 52 , personal and protective service workers 51 , sales and service elementary occupations 91 and teaching associate professionals 33 , i. Atypical work and employment growth by occupations ISCO , — The data show that Germany now has a sizeable low pay sector below two thirds of the median gross hourly pay.
Pay dispersion and low pay also grew more for women than for men. If we add in non-standard contracts, the low pay sector is even bigger.
Pay dispersion and low pay incidence in Germany. All persons. Difference — Selected occupational groups. Finally, with respect to employment conditions, atypical work and low pay tend to go together in many occupations, as Fig. Again, the most affected are mainly those occupations where employment growth was associated with an increased share of atypical contracts 42, 51, 52, 91 and agency assigned work contracts Atypical work and low pay by occupations.
Regarding mobility between different types of jobs, Fig. Taking a longer time perspective, as Fig.
Over the last years, however, staying in a fixed-term employment status became somewhat more frequent. Only a small group cumulates longer phases of non-standard work. Frequency of atypical employment between and Source: SOEP, own calculations. Never, always inside employment. Never, always outside employment. Going beyond descriptive evidence, a large body of recent research has analysed both wage gaps and transition probabilities between atypical and standard employment types. Part-time work is also characterized by a wage gap after correcting for worker and job characteristics Wolf Furthermore, there is some evidence that marginal part-time workers receive significantly lower gross hourly wages than other part-time workers Voss and Weinkopf Research now shows that transitions from a fixed-term to a permanent contract is relatively frequent in Germany, in particular for young people entering the private sector for whom fixed-term contracts outside genuine apprenticeships which make up for about half of all fixed-term contracts can be seen as an extended probationary period, while continuous renewals of fixed-term contracts are even more widespread in the public, academic and social sector where specific conditions prevail Bellmann et al.
Mobility from temporary agency work to permanent direct employment is more problematic, however, given the distinct institutional arrangement and functional logic of agency work in Germany Baumgarten et al. With respect to part-time work, we see significant employment stability of voluntary part-time work in Germany, which can also be perceived as a standard employment contract at reduced weekly hours.
Yet most part-time workers likely prefer to expand their working time Holst and Seifert Mobility barriers that exist with respect to marginal part-time work can be attributed to the prohibitive marginal tax rates experienced at the threshold earnings level in this segment Eichhorst et al.
In: Proceedings Mummert, M. Performance of screening questionnaires and risk scores for undiagnosed diabetes. Her research focuses on political Islam, Islamic extremism, multiple modernities, feminist Islam, transformation of gender orders, multiculturalism, secularism and post-secularism. New jobs in service occupations have contributed to a significantly higher level of employment compared to earlier phases, and many of these jobs are in non-standard forms of contracts. Welchen Einfluss hat die strukturelle Benachteiligung einer Region?
Mobility from low pay to higher wages is more frequent with younger and better skilled workers as well as male workers in general, in particular if they can leave i firms with large segments of low paid jobs and ii unskilled service occupations Mosthaf et al. When trying to explain the pattern of labour market duality discussed above, we can argue that besides structural change and strategic behaviour of market actors, in particular employers, labour market institutions and reforms play a major role in shaping the functioning of the German labour market, specifically regarding atypical work.
It is true that there has always been a certain segmentation of the industrial labour force in Germany based on skill requirements and mirrored by patterns of pay and tenure, but institutional flexibility has grown over time, which major implications for the spread and character of atypical work. Regarding open-ended full-time contracts, dismissal protection has remained more or less at the same level as it used to be in the s.
Reforms marginally liberalising dismissal protection by lifting the company size threshold and narrowing the social selection criteria for fair dismissals introduced in the mids were undone in the late s and partially restored in the early s. Apart from that no major changes were implemented on the legislative side. Social protection of fully socially insured permanent employees has changed, however, in particular by shortening the maximum duration of unemployment insurance benefit receipt for older workers, a cut from 32 to 18 month and later extended to 24 months again.
More important for the development of standard contracts was the restructuring of collective bargaining and company-level strategies. First, beginning in the s, sectoral negotiations linking wages, working time and job stability were mostly characteristic of the core manufacturing sector in Germany. This led to increased flexibility within collective agreements regarding pay and working time adjustment. At the same time, however, manufacturing employers also promoted outsourcing and offshoring, thereby redrawing the borders of the core workforce more narrowly.
One has to note further that major employment gains in standard employment contracts occurred in the private service sector, most notably in highly skilled occupations, which offset the stagnating and rather shrinking employment capacity of the manufacturing sector. However, collective bargaining coverage is much lower in many of the most dynamic private services, which also contributes to the increase in wage dispersion and low pay Dustmann et al. With respect to non-standard contracts, a number of changes have shown medium and long run consequences of some deregulation at the margin of the labour market.
These changes were more significant than legislative modifications of the standard employment contract, i. First, over the last 3 decades, starting in the mids, fixed-term contracts have been liberalised in a step-wise manner with only a few smaller steps reversing parts of the deregulatory path. Currently, fixed-term contracts without having to provide a valid reason are legal in Germany for up to 2 years with the possibility of up to three renewals.
Furthermore, since the mids fixed-term employment without having to provide a valid reason is basically unrestricted when hiring older unemployed individuals and during the first years of a business start-up. Gestaltung der Freiheit.
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