The convergence and divergence of job discretion between occupations and institutional regimes in Europe from 1995 to 2010

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Abstract

Drawing on technical change and institutional theories, this paper examines the convergence and divergence of job discretion between occupations and institutional regimes in Europe from 1995-2010. Latent growth modelling of a pseudo-panel data set derived from the European Working Conditions Survey reveals that significantly different rates of change have led to an increasing polarisation of job discretion between occupations and between Nordic and other European countries. Across occupations the findings are in keeping with routine-biased technical change rather than skill-biased technical change theories and suggest that the effects of technical change on job discretion depend largely on whether technology substitutes or complements job tasks. Across countries, the results are in line with employment regime theory, which suggests that institutional differences (particularly employment policies and trade union influence) are driving cross-national variation in job discretion. Overall, a more comprehensive empirical and theoretical understanding is provided of factors shaping change in a key aspect of job quality, namely job discretion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)619-647
JournalJournal of Management Studies
Volume55
Issue number4
Early online date25 Jan 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jan 2017

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