New books


Culture And The Labour Market

Siobhan Austen

Edward Elgar 2003 ca 168 s. ISBN 1 84376 317 6
Bogomtale fra forlaget.

Culture and the Labour Market is a highly readable and innovative analysis of a difficult area of labour market research. It draws on a wide range of theoretical literature and produces interesting new empirical results based on extensive analyses of large-scale international surveys. In short, I can recommend it highly.’
– John Creedy, New Zealand Treasury

Culture and the Labour Market attempts to define the meaning of culture and the nature of its possible consequences on economic processes and outcomes. In particular, the book examines alternative theoretical and empirical approaches to the economic analysis of cultural effects in the labour market. Using extensive new data from fourteen countries, the author finds tangible evidence of substantial cross-cultural differences in beliefs about wage inequality.
To enhance the study, Siobhan Austen looks in detail at the meaning and importance of social norms, shared beliefs and attitudes throughout the world. She examines recent trends in wage disparity around the globe and relates these to changing beliefs about the legitimacy of inequality. The results reveal that cultural norms relating to wage disparity actually alter with the experience of high levels of inequality. Significantly, the analysis also indicates that cultural norms have the potential to modify certain economic outcomes such as the wage structure and level of unemployment.
This comprehensive and highly original study of the economic influence of culture will be indispensable to labour and social economists. It will also be of value to academics working on labour market theory and policy, and the hitherto neglected link with culture.

Preface 1. Introduction 2. Culture and the Labour Market 3. Approaches to the Analysis of Cultural Effects in the Labour Market 4. A Model of the Relationship between Norms of Equity, Reference Level Norms and Skill-based Wage Differentials 5. Community Attitudes to Skill-based Wage Differentials 6. Norms of Equality and the Wage Structure in Fourteen Countries 7. Norms of Equality in a Changing World: Evidence from Six Countries 8. Norms of Need and Minimum Wages 9. Summary and Conclusion Bibliography Index