Negotiate Overcoming early job-insecurity in Europe

NEGOTIATE progress meeting – preparing the final outcomes on the consequences of youth unemployment in Europe

by Ischi Graus

Last week the project consortium members came together in Sofia, Bulgaria, for their last Progress Meeting and General Assembly. The meeting was organised by the Institute for the Study of Societies and Knowledge (ISSK). The main aim of the meeting was to have a discussion on the two volumes that will bring together the main outcomes of the research carried out by the project. Both volumes will be published by Edward Elgar and will appear by the summer of 2018. The first book will cover youth unemployment and job insecurity in Europe and will assess the problems, risk factors and policies. The second book will touch upon the experiences of early job insecurity and how it relates to scarring, resilience and wellbeing of European youth.

Both volumes will look at the differences between EU Member States regarding policies and institutions at hand to cope with the consequences of youth unemployment and job-insecurity. They also examine the main causes and consequences of early career insecurity and what youth would like to see their governments do to tackle the effects of youth unemployment. Contributions to the book also engage into the question of how job insecurity affects wellbeing and family formation, hence the effects it can have beyond the labour market.

The main outcomes will be discussed with the scholars involved in the project, youth, policy makers, trade unions and civil society on 4 and 5 December 2017 when the NEGOTIATE project will hold its final conference in Brussels. More information on this event will come shortly. To receive updates on the NEGOTIATE project, please don’t hesitate to subscribe to our newsletter (bottom of page).

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Job-hopping sends negative signals to Bulgarian employers

by Christer Hyggen

The employer report from Bulgaria is officially released. The study registers a shortage of staff in five sectors of employment in Bulgaria, together with the presence of attitudes among those selecting people for recruitment, which limit the potential circle of candidates for job openings.

The survey was focused on five economic sectors, in each of which, specific positions were sought:machine building  – mechanics; finance and insurance services – finance clerk; healthcare – nursing;hotel and restaurant industry – waiter/waitress information technologies – IT specialist.

Frequent change of jobs is seen by employers as a negative signal that has greater weight than periods of unemployment in the candidate’s biography.

The most important characteristics looked at when hiring people in Bulgaria are the skills for team work the willingness to undergo additional training and a suitable education. Despite this, student status is assessed by employers in some cases as an obstacle to performing one’s duties in the company. The degree of completed education is more important for employers in Bulgaria than the concrete specialty in which job candidates have graduated.”

Read the full report here (In Bulgarian)

Read the comparative report here

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No justification for unemployment reduces job-chances in Greece

by Christer Hyggen

The employer report from Greece is officially released.

It highlights the characteristics of recruiters in five sectors, health/care, restaurants, IT, mechanics and financial services and explores the procedures and criteria followed during the selection of candidates for job vacancies.

Among the most significant findings of the survey is that CVs and interviews with candidates remain the most important tools to choose a candidate, while experience in the sector and relevant vocational training are highly evaluated by recruiters.

Candidates who do not provide any justification for their unemployment spells face increasing possibilities of not being hired.

Job hopping seems to have a negative effect, since recruiters are much more reluctant to hire someone who has been changing jobs than someone who has been unemployed during the last years.

Finally, despite high unemployment rate and high labour supply, recruiters from all examined sectors face difficulties in finding suitable candidates for their vacancies.

Read the Greek report here

Read the comparative report here

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Fruitful meeting between the EXCEPT and the NEGOTIATE projects

by Greta Juul

Bjorn Hvinden the coordinator of the NEGOTIATE project visited the EXCEPT workshop in Thessaloniki (Greece) in August 2017. He gave the overview of the NEGOTIATE project and presented the main findings.

The EXCEPT researchers were very interested in the results and methods of the project, showing how important such meetings are for the promotion of cooperation.  EXCEPT project coordinator Marge Unt visited the Horizon2020 funded NEGOTIATE project in April 2017.

EXCEPT is the NEGOTIATE’s sister project, centred on young people in Europe. It examines the long- and short-term consequences of experiencing job insecurity or labour market exclusion in the transition to adulthood. NEGOTIATE and EXCEPT received funding under the same call of Horizon 2020 on the consequences of early job insecurity.

At the workshop, Hvinden gave an overview of the NEGOTIATE project and its main findings so far. Hvinden highlighted the relationships between specific thematic issues and between diverse methodological approaches – quantitative and qualitative – of the project.

He emphasized that these approaches are complementing each other, for instance in understanding the action taken by young people faced with job insecurity and the short- and long-term effects (‘scarring’) of having been involuntarily out work for an extended period in early adulthood.

The NEGOTIATE team is currently engaged in efforts to link and integrate the findings from the different parts of the projects. Such integration is essential for achieving original contributions to existing knowledge, and not the least, for being able to give precise and detailed recommendations for policy innovation for stakeholders at European and national levels.

The workshop also included a roundtable discussion with Greek and European stakeholders, introduced by short presentations of the main findings and key policy recommendations from the EXCEPT team. The presentations illustrated both similarities and differences with the issues examined and the approaches used by NEGOTIATE.

When engaging with the findings and recommendations from EXCEPT, stakeholders emphasized the value of having empirical findings on the impact of national as well as European policies from both projects. Moreover, the stakeholders argued for the desirability of having findings and recommendations specified at the country level.

In some cases, they also felt it would be helpful to have recommendations specified according to kind of stakeholder e.g. for employer federations, trade unions, associations of regional and local authorities, civil society organizations involved in supporting young people without work, and even campaigns and groups of and for young people faced with persistent job insecurity and precarity.

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Young job-hoppers struggle in Switzerland

by Christer Hyggen

The employer report from Switzerland is officially released. One main message presented in the press release is that young people who frequently change jobs or work in positions that are unrelated to their vocational or academic studies are hampering their job chances. Indiscriminate measures that aim to get unemployed people back to work as quickly as possible and in temporary positions can therefore put them at a disadvantage.

Read the press release from the University of Basel here

Read the full report (In German) here

Read the comparative employer report and reports from Bulgaria, Greece and Norway here


Listen to a radio interview on SRF 2 Kultur with Christian Imdorf (Starting at18:49 – 23:04) here

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