Job Precarity and the Life-Course – How Polish Youth Manage Their Unstable Lives
This paper addresses these questions through an analysis of 34 qualitative inteviews, conducted in 2016 among young (age up to 40) Polish temporary workers who have completed full-time education. The interviews offer a vivid illustration of the economic risks associated with precarious employment, and the processess of individualization of risk (Beck and Beck-Gernheim 2002), whereby the young view (and legitimize) their job and life trajectories as self-constructed and not subject to structural constraints. For a broader view of the life-course outcomes of labor market risks portrayed in the interviews, I supplement the qualitative results by an analysis of quantitative data from the Polish Panel Survey POLPAN 1988-2013. POLPAN is a rich source of biographical information for a representative national sample of Polish adults, enabling the assessment of long-term trends in the timing of key biographical events, such as: leaving the parental home, migration, marriage and childbirth, across successive cohorts.