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Irina Sizova, Lyudmila Leonova, Andrea Hense

The Precariousness of Employment and Labor Incomes in Russia and Germany: Self-Perception of Wage Workers

2017. Vol. 18. No. 4. P. 14–59 [issue contents]
The issue of social inequality has always been a focus of sociological knowledge. Meanwhile, extensive discussions about new forms of inequality and social participation were driven by changes in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. As a result, the topic of “precarity” has become more relevant in recent times. The reasons for this interest are the growing tensions in labor markets and problems of employment systems in various countries. The purpose of this article is to study the precarious opportunities for employees in the context of an analysis of their self-assessments of the risks of job losses and future labor incomes, as well as to compare this self-perception between those employed in Russia and Germany. The aim of the comparative analysis is the identification of social factors of the precarious employment in market economies, and to achieve an understanding of the degree of social inequality from the point of employment participation in Russia. The article starts with an examination of the theoretical foundations. These foundations are a modern interpretation of the sociological theory of the social structure of society, the development of resources, and actor theories. The model of the subjective perception of inequality A. Hense is under consideration. In the model, the conceptual provisions of methodological individualism of S. Lindenberg and P. Burdieu’s methodological relativism are integrated. The data of the Russia Longitudinal Monitoring Survey — Higher School of Economics (RLMS-HSE) and German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) were used for multivariate analysis. Determinants (production, legal, contextual) were studied using generalized ordered probit models with random effects. As a result, the authors conclude that the precariousness of employment and incomes in Russia captures a large proportion of wage earners and is fixed throughout the observation period. A higher level of education weakens anxiety, although in Russia it should be more significant than in Germany. Workers are a risk group in the self-perception of precarity, but the situation in Russia is changing if differentiated professional groups are evaluated. Working conditions depend on the system of social support for workers and on the social capital of workers (family support and the origin of the worker). The selfperception of precariousness among workers increases if the number of dependents is high. The size of the enterprise has a different impact on self-perception of the precariousness for workers in Russia and Germany. In Russia, women are most susceptible to the perception of precarity, whereas in Germany, such effects are not recorded. In general, the study shows that the reduction of inequality in the involvement of citizens in the labor market in the modern market economy is directly related to the proactive role of the state in the social protection of workers.
Citation: Sizova I., Leonova L., Hense A. (2017) Prekaritet zanyatosti i dokhodov v Rossii i Germanii: samovospriyatie naemnymi rabotnikami [The Precariousness of Employment and Labor Incomes in Russia and Germany: Self-Perception of Wage Workers]. Economic Sociology, vol. 18, no 4, pp. 14-59 (in Russian)
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