Predicting Welfare Attitudes By Precarity of Work Regime Using the European Social Survey and the European Working Conditions Survey

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 09:22
Location: Hörsaal 16 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Amy HEALY, Maynooth University, NUIM, Ireland
Sean O RIAIN, Maynooth University, Ireland
Esping-Andersen’s The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism clearly demonstrated the relationship between labour markets and welfare regimes across Europe, with the welfare state emerging strongest where workers were able to mobilise to protect themselves against ‘commodification’. The Varieties of Capitalism approach more recently argued that workers in marketised contexts would welcome commodification, while those with specific skills would have a stronger interest in the development of welfare protections.  Each approach within comparative political economy has implications for the well documented link between the type of welfare regime and public attitudes towards welfare. Indeed, they suggest that more attention should be paid to the impact of workplace, precarity and employment regimes on attitudes to welfare.

This research uses the European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS) in tandem with the European Social Survey (ESS) to assess attitudes towards welfare across work regimes in the EU-15.  The EWCS contains extensive information on both the employment relationship and the labour process for a random sample of households across Europe.  However, it does not gather attitudinal data.  The ESS contains demographic information on respondents including basic employment relations, a module on work and well-being in 2004 and 2010 along with extensive data on attitudes.

Multi-level latent class analysis has been used to estimate typologies of work regimes with varying degrees of precarity and how they cluster within regions across Europe.  Using multi-level modelling, we have examined how exposure to certain types of work experiences, precarity and welfare regime shapes attitudes to social protection and social investment for oneself and others.