Cross-national differences in job quality among low-skilled young workers in Europe

A. de Grip, M.H.J. Wolbers

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Abstract

Purpose – the purpose of this paper is to analyse the extent to which the quality of the jobs of low-skilled young workers is affected by the structure of education and training systems in various european countries. It focuses on the differences between countries providing fairly general education (internal labour market (ilm) contexts) and countries offering more specific vocational education (occupational labour market (olm) contexts).design/methodology/approach – logistic regression analyses.findings – it is found that low-skilled young workers are worse off in olm countries than in ilm ones, with respect to employment in a permanent job, employment in a non-elementary job and participation in continuing vocational training. However, in olm countries low-skilled young workers are less often involuntary part-time employed than those in ilm countries. With regard to participation in continuing vocational training, the ilm-olm contrast is larger in manufacturing than in services; regarding employment in a permanent job the reverse is true.originality/value – it is shown that the labour market position of low-skilled young workers is affected by the structure of education and training systems in various european countries. The upgrading of the skills demanded in the european “knowledge economies” will therefore have less severe consequences for low-skilled young workers in ilm countries than in olm countries, since the acquisition of occupationally specific skills is organized differently between the two institutional contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-433
JournalInternational Journal of Manpower
Volume27
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006

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