Working time and workers’ preferences in industrialized Countries. Finding the balance

This volume examines the changing nature in working time in industrialized countries. Globalization, demographics changes, increasing numbers of women in the labour market; all these changes have resulted in working time arrangements which now look vastly different from what they did several decades ago.

The gradual reduction in weekly working hours in the first half of the last century, which culminated in the widespread adoption of the "standard" working week by the 1960s, was grounded in a concern for health and safety and the preservation of time outside of paid labour.

However, over the last few decades, this progressive standardization of working time has given way to a diversification and individualization in working hours as employers have responded to the competitive pressures of globalization by requiring that productivity be enhanced through changes in working-time schedules.

Since the turn of the century, a common goal to remove or liberalize restrictions on unsocial hours and vary working hours has emerged. This book draws together an international team of contributors to examine the process.

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