Analyzing Inequality: Life Chances and Social Mobility in by Stefan Svallfors

By Stefan Svallfors

Reading Inequality summarizes key matters in today’s theoretically guided empirical study on social inequality, existence path, and cross-national comparative sociology. It describes the development made when it comes to info resources, either cross-sectional and longitudinal; the recent tools that make inequality learn attainable; new methods of pondering and explaining; and empirical findings or vital contributions of rigorous empirical study to our understanding.The chapters, each one written by means of a individual social scientist, are of curiosity to either students and scholars. this can be the one ebook thus far to take inventory of the state-of-the-art in stratification learn, interpreting facts, equipment, conception, and new empirical findings. reading Inequality deals an surprisingly and impressively extensive insurance of important themes within the box.

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Women are out of the house most of the day. Although such a historical phenomenology of life course changes may be more or less plausible, it remains unclear what actually are the precise mechanisms and institutional underpinnings that would generate the distinct life course outcomes. A reading of the literature produces a list like the following one: 1. The traditional life course regime was regulated by the demographics of high mortality and high fertility, by prerequisites and vicissitudes of a rural economy without the benefits of the agrochemical fertilization of soil and scientific animal husbandry.

The median age at marriage exhibits the well-known massive rise by about five years up to the 1990s, when it stabilized. Age at first job increased in a trend-like fashion by about three years for both women and men. Job durations and occupational stability, which should have been most affected by the “postindustrial crisis,” appear to be fluctuating. What analysts can observe then with such data on transitions to adulthood, employment trajectories, and family behavior appears to be a mixture of robust trends and non-trend-like cohort variation, but scarcely any indication of the dramatic consequences of a “regime change,” such as the breakdown of the Rhenish model postulated in the political economy literature.

Job shifts between firms are rare (but increasing for men), and changes between fields of occupational activities are even rarer (Mayer and Hillmert 2003). For those who successfully manage their labor market entry, mean income trajectories are progressive up to the early forties and then flatten out. Efficiency wages and seniority schemes are widespread even in the private sector. The industry-wide binding character of collective agreements and informal wage coordination between industry unions ensures relatively low degrees of wage inequality.

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