Changes in the Employment Structure and in Job Quality in Italy: A National and Regional Analysis
41 Pages Posted: 16 Apr 2021
Date Written: February 12, 2021
This paper contributes to the literature on changes in the employment structure, focusing on the job quality created and destroyed in Italy and in its regions in the years 2011-17. To do so, we apply a ‘jobs-based’ approach methodology similar to the one developed by Eurofound researchers and we use Labour Force Survey data from the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT). Our findings suggest that in the period, Italy experienced a polarisation pattern skewed towards lower-paid jobs, whereas we observe an upgrading trend at the average EU level. This pattern is the result of diverging trends across Italy: while the central and northern regions are responsible for the growth not only in the share of workers in low quality occupations but also in higher quality ones, southern Italy contributed exclusively to the increase in low-paid jobs. The latter area is the only one experiencing a clear downgrading trend over the years 2011-17. Sectoral trends are partially responsible for these patterns. Furthermore, we find that in recent years, the economic divide between northern-central and southern regions has widened. Within each macro-area, the contribution of different regions to the total trends was heterogeneous, in particular in the South of Italy, where some regions contributed positively to employment growth in higher paid jobs too, although their role was overshadowed by those that performed worse.
Keywords: job quality, labour market
JEL Classification: J21, R11
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation