Sociology Index

Labour Market Segmentation

In the theory of labor market segmentation, there exists important differences on the demand side which imply differences in compensation and labor market segmentation theory splits the aggregate labor market into the primary labor market and the secondary labour market. The structural changes of the labour market in the industrialised economies have become an important topic in labour market research and practical labour market policy.

The Irish political economist John Elliott Cairnes referred to labor market segmentation as that of "noncompeting groups." Sloane et al. (1993), Orr (1997) and Roig (1999) shed light especially on the existence of labour market segmentation. The dual labour market theory states that the labour market can be divided into at least two segments.

Regarding changes in French and British labour market as in their educational system since the eighties, one may address the evolution of their labour market segmentation. Is the predominance of Internal Labour Market in France and Occupational Labour Market in Great Britain (Eyraud, Marsden, Silvestre,1990) still relevant ?


Labour market segmentation, flexibility, and recession: a British Columbian case study
R Hayter, T J Barnes - Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy 10(3) 333 – 353
Abstract. The purpose in this paper is to examine theories of labour market segmentation within the context of the early 1980s recession, and its immediate aftermath, in British Columbia, Canada. The paper is divided into four parts: first is a review of Doeringer's and Piore's classic presentation of labor market segmentation theory focusing on the Fordist firm, and a comparison of it with more recent statements on labour markets made by Atkinson in connection with his work on the flexible firm. Employment change and labour market segmentation are examined in terms of occupational, gender, and industry characteristics for manufacturing, wholesaling, and producer service sectors in British Columbia.

Temporary Contracts and Labour Market Segmentation in Spain - An Employment-Rent Approach - Javier G. Polavieja
Pompeu Fabra University, Department of Political and Social Sciences - European Sociological Review 19:501-517 (2003)
The article presents a theoretical model as well as empirical evidence to explain this process. The employment-rent approach focuses on the impact of deregulation through temporary employment on the employment-rent optimization strategies of both employers and employees at the micro-level. Two main micro-level effects of deregulation are identified, the so-called ‘incentive’ and ‘buffer’ mechanisms. These two mechanisms are expected to reinforce each other until an equilibrium state in the labour market segmentation process is reached.

Labour Market Segmentation and Informal Work in Southern Europe
Enzo Mingione, University of Padova, Italy - European Urban and Regional Studies, Vol. 2, No. 2, 121-143 (1995)
This model is characterized by dynamic family enterprises and self-employment, non-wage contributions to house hold livelihood strategies; and the relatively limited formation of a fully proletarianized working class engaged in manufacturing industry.

Labour Market Segmentation in Central Europe during the First Years of Transition
Ariane Pailhé, National Institute of Demographic Studies (INED) - Labour, Vol. 17, pp. 127-152, March 2003
Abstract: Using estimates from a two-regime model, we show that labour market segmentation has persisted throughout the first years of systemic change. However, labour market segmentation has evolved to some extent. Firms that used to have priority now coexist alongside new activities within the primary segment. In this way, labour market segmentation results both in the appearance of new, formal institutions and the persistence of informal institutions.

Labour Market Segmentation Revisited: A Study of the Dutch Call Centre Sector
Grip Andries de, Sieben Inge, Jaarsveld Danielle van (ROA wp)
Call centres are often classified as ‘electronic sweatshops’ offering only ‘dead-end jobs’ (Taylor, et al., 2002; Deery & Kinnie, 2004).The labour market for call centre agents could thus be characterised as a ‘secondary labour market’ of insecure, poorly paid jobs without any career opportunities (Dekker, De Grip & Heijke, 2002). We analyze survey data collected from a national survey of call centre managers in the Netherlands. We investigate whether the need for workforce flexibility may provide an explanation for the labour market segmentation in the call centre sector. We begin with a brief overview of labour market segmentation theory. We investigate the differences between employment conditions in in-house and subcontractor call centres, to determine whether there is labour market segmentation. We assess the influence of industrial relations and determine whether these reflect the labour market segmentation.

Labour market segmentation and the state: the New Zealand experience
Peter Brosnan, Griffith Univ. Brisbane, Australia, David Rea and Moira Wilson, Univ. of Cambridge UK
Abstract: Analyses the role of the state in the historical process of labour market segmentation. The New Zealand labour market is used as an example of the state's role in the process of labour market segmentation.

The industrial structure and labour market segmentation: Urban and regional implications
Michael W. Danson, Department of Social and Economic Research, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
Abstract: Danson M. W. (1982) We argue that dualism in the industrial structure, as suggested by Averitt, 1968, and Galbraith, 1967, determines stratification and segmentation in the labour market, as suggested by Kerr, 1954, Piore, 1973, and Friedmann, 1977.

Labour Market Segmentation in Small Business
Karl-Heinz Schmidt, Professor Karl-Heinz Schmidt of Paderborn University, West Germany, is currently visiting research scholar at Nagoya University, Japan. - International Small Business Journal, Vol. 2, No. 1, 38-45 (1983)
The paper gives insight into the functioning of the tripartite labour market and its consequences for employment fluctuations in very small enterprises and large firms. The question is whether small business is marked by labour market segmentation.

Labour Market Segmentation, Flexibility and Precariousness in the Italian North East
Tattara, Giuseppe, Valentini, Marco
Abstract: Since the late 1970s, inequality of condition has been on the rise in a number of OECD countries. One of the main causes of economic inequality, in Italy as in many other European countries, is rooted in the segmentation of the labour market.

Segmentation or Competition in China's Urban Labour Market?
John B. Knight, University of Oxford - Department of Economics
Linda Yueh - Cambridge Journal of Economics, Vol. 33, Issue 1, pp. 79-94, 2009
Abstract: In China, urban residents have been protected against labour market competition from rural-urban migrants. Rural-urban migration was allowed to increase in order to fill the employment gap as growth of labour demand outstripped that of the resident labour force in urban areas. The paper examines whether the relationship is one of segmentation or competition in the labour market. The findings are consistent with the presence of continued labour market segmentation.

François Michon, CNRS, Centre d’Économie de la Sorbonne, Université de Paris
An overview of the empirical questions, which presided at the time of the spreading of theories concerning the Labour Market Segmentation (LMS) theory in France.

Family labour supply and labour market segmentation
John Baffoe-Bonnie, Department of Economics, Pennsylvania State University, USA
Abstract: This paper examines the differences in individuals' labour supply decisions in different segments of the labour market. It is concluded that the family labour supply decisions of individuals differ by labour market segment.

Unequal Opportunity Structure and Labour Market Segmentation
Reinhard Kreckel, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg - Sociology, Vol. 14, No. 4, 525-550 (1980)
Sociology of social stratification and labour market economics have developed in isolation from one another. The present paper attempts to bring these two traditions closer together. Max Weber's idea of 'class situation as market situation' and to his concept of 'social closure' is advocated. Leads a typology model which is supposed to supersede the traditional notion of social inequality due to hierarchy and superposed strata.

Labour market segmentation: evidence from Cyprus House WJ
POPLINE Document Number: 196095 - Geneva, Switzerland, International Labour Office, 1982., 33 p. (Population and Labour Policies Programme Working Paper No. 117.)
Abstract: It is hypothesized that the market is segmented according to sex and the two endogenous variables, the public/private sector of employment, and firm size. To estimate the degree of labor market segmentation, author questions whether individuals can move from low-wage jobs in the secondary segment to the high-wage segment. The public sector's much smaller differentials show fairer recruitment and promotion policies with assured economic mobility into the sector's professional ranks.

Labour market segmentation in Britain: the decline of occupational labour markets and the spread of ‘entry tournaments’ - David Marsden, London School of Economics, Centre for Economic Performance
Abstract: This paper reviews the changing pattern of labour market segmentation in Britain since the mid-1970s. It examines the spread of highly competitive conditions for entry into service economy and knowledge economy.

Labour Market Segmentation and the Reserve Army of Labour: Theory, History, Future - Thomas Henry Stubbs, The University of Waikato 2008
Abstract: This thesis begins by revisiting and building on themes of labour market segmentation, with particular reference given to Karl Marx’s seminal account of segmentation in Capital, Vol.1 (Chapter 25).
A short history of segmentation under capitalism traces recent phases of development in both developed and lesser-developed nations. It is demonstrated that the coercive international regulatory dynamic extends the competitive principle of the capitalist mode of production.

Paul G. Chapman, University of Dundee - Department of Economics and Management DUNDEE. DDI 4HN, Scotland
Abstract: A two period model of the training decision is analysed using a human capital approach.

Do they come back again? Job search, labour market segmentation and state dependence as explanations of repeat unemployment - R. Winter-Ebmer and J. Zweimüller
Empirical Economics, Physica Verlag, An Imprint of Springer-Verlag GmbH (Online) Issue Vol 17, Num 2 / June, 1992
Abstract: Using data from the Austrian unemployment register we test the power of three different approaches: job search theory, labour market segmentation and state dependence. Job search theory does not seem to be able to explain anything, labour market segmentation does.

Labour Market Segmentation: a Comparison between France and the UK From the Eighties to nowadays.
Aline Valette, Université de Provence (U1) et Université de la Méditerranée
Abstract: The evolution of their labour market segmentation. Is the predominance of Internal Labour Market in France and Occupational Labour Market in Great Britain still relevant?

Understanding Labour Market Segmentation: Filipina Healthcare Workers in Transnational Toronto
Philip Kelly, Department of Geography, York University, Toronto
Sylvia D’Addario, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia
Abstract: The concentration of visible minorities in certain occupations is well-established in the labour market literature. Explanations relate to social processes operating at the scale of the urban labour market: social capital and networks, regulatory frameworks, and constructions of racialised and gendered identities.