Gender and the Contours of Precarious Employment: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Gender and the Contours of Precarious Employment

1st Edition

Edited by Leah F. Vosko, Martha MacDonald, Iain Campbell


282 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

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Precarious employment presents a monumental challenge to the social, economic, and political stability of labour markets in industrialized societies and there is widespread consensus that its growth is contributing to a series of common social inequalities, especially along the lines of gender and citizenship.

The editors argue that these inequalities are evident at the national level across industrialized countries, as well as at the regional level within federal societies, such as Canada, Germany, the United States, and Australia and in the European Union. This book brings together contributions addressing this issue which include case studies exploring the size, nature, and dynamics of precarious employment in different industrialized countries and chapters examining conceptual and methodological challenges in the study of precarious employment in comparative perspective.

The collection aims to yield new ways of understanding, conceptualizing, measuring, and responding, via public policy and other means – such as new forms of union organization and community organizing at multiple scales – to the forces driving labour market insecurity.


For both its empirical and its theoretical content, this book is an essential addition

to the libraries of scholars of gender, of work/life balance, and of what

the editors prefer to call ‘precariousness in employment. - Anne Junor, Industrial Relations Research Centre, The University of New South Wales, Australia

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Gender and the Concept of Precarious Employment Leah F. Vosko, Martha Macdonald and Iain Campbell 2. Canada: Gendered Precariousness and Social Reproduction Leah F. Vosko and Lisa Clark 3. The United States: Different Sources of Precariousness in a Mosaic of Employment Arrangements Francoise Carré and James Heintz 4. Australia: Casual Employment, Part-Time Employment and the Resilience of the Male-Breadwinner Model Iain Campbell, Gillian Whitehouse and Janeen Baxter 5. Japan: The Reproductive Bargain and the Making of Precarious Employment Heidi Gottfried 6. Ireland: Precarious Employment in the Context of the European Employment Strategy Julia S. O’Connor 7. The United Kingdom: From Flexible Employment to Vulnerable Workers Jacqueline O’Reilly, John Macinnes, Tiziana Nazio and Jose Roche 8. The Netherlands: Precarious Employment in a Context of Flexicurity Susanne D. Burri 9. France: Precariousness, Gender and the Challenges for Labour Market Policy Jeanne Fagnani and Marie-Thérèse Letablier 10. Spain: Continuity and Change in Precarious Employment John Macinnes 11. Germany: Precarious Employment and the Rise of Mini-Jobs Claudia Weinkopf 12. Sweden: Precarious Work and Precarious Unemployment Inger Jonsson and Anita Nyberg 13. Spatial Dimensions of Gendered Precariousness: Challenges for Comparative Analysis Martha Macdonald 14. Investigating Longitudinal Dimensions of Precarious Employment: Conceptual And Practical Issues Sylvia Fuller 15. Precarious Lives in the New Economy: Comparative Intersectional Analysis Wallace Clement, Sophie Mathieu, Steven Prus and Emre Uckardesler 16. Precarious Employment in the Health Care Sector

About the Editors

Leah F. Vosko is Canada Research Chair in Feminist Political Economy at the School of Social Sciences (Political Science), York University, Toronto, Canada.

Martha MacDonald is Professor in the Economics department at Saint Mary’s University, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Iain Campbell is a Senior Research Fellow at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

About the Series

Routledge IAFFE Advances in Feminist Economics

The International Association for Feminist Economics (IAFFE) aims to increase the visibility and range of economic research on gender; facilitate communication among scholars, policymakers, and activists concerned with women's wellbeing and empowerment; promote discussions among policy makers about interventions which serve women's needs; educate economists, policymakers, and the general public about feminist perspectives on economic issues; foster feminist evaluations of economics as a discipline; expose the gender blindness characteristic of much social science and the ways in which this impoverishes all research - even research that does not explicitly concern women’s issues; help expand opportunities for women, especially women from underrepresented groups, within economics; and, encourage the inclusion of feminist perspectives in the teaching of economics.

The IAFFE book series pursues the aims of the organization by providing a forum in which scholars have space to develop their ideas at length and in detail. The series exemplifies the value of feminist research and the high standard of IAFFE-sponsored scholarship.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Industries / General