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The emotional trade-off between meaningful and precarious work in new economies

Journal Article


Abstract


  • © The Author(s) 2020. The contradictory work environments of new economies in late modernity are associated with a range of emotional experiences, requiring diverse emotion management strategies. Late modernity offers the capacity to pursue happy, safe, rewarding, and meaningful work for the privileged few; a potential trade-off between stressful meaningful and boring precarious work for a greater number; and the prospect of non-meaningful, precarious work for many in the new economy characterised by short-term contracts, gig work, precarity, and anxiety. This study draws on data from the 2015–16 Australian Social Attitudes Survey to examine workers’ emotions in various combinations of meaningful and precarious employment, and the degree to which these emotions are managed. It finds that it is best to have secure meaningful work, worst to have highly precarious work, and slightly better to have safe but alienating than risky meaningful work, in terms of avoiding often hidden negative emotions.

UOW Authors


  •   Patulny, Roger
  •   Mills, Kathy (external author)
  •   Olson, Rebecca E. (external author)
  •   Bellocchi, Alberto (external author)
  •   McKenzie, Jordan

Publication Date


  • 2020

Citation


  • Patulny, R., Mills, K., Olson, R., Bellocchi, A. & McKenzie, J. (2020). The emotional trade-off between meaningful and precarious work in new economies. Journal of Sociology,

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85088831007

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/asshpapers/128

Has Global Citation Frequency


Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom

Abstract


  • © The Author(s) 2020. The contradictory work environments of new economies in late modernity are associated with a range of emotional experiences, requiring diverse emotion management strategies. Late modernity offers the capacity to pursue happy, safe, rewarding, and meaningful work for the privileged few; a potential trade-off between stressful meaningful and boring precarious work for a greater number; and the prospect of non-meaningful, precarious work for many in the new economy characterised by short-term contracts, gig work, precarity, and anxiety. This study draws on data from the 2015–16 Australian Social Attitudes Survey to examine workers’ emotions in various combinations of meaningful and precarious employment, and the degree to which these emotions are managed. It finds that it is best to have secure meaningful work, worst to have highly precarious work, and slightly better to have safe but alienating than risky meaningful work, in terms of avoiding often hidden negative emotions.

UOW Authors


  •   Patulny, Roger
  •   Mills, Kathy (external author)
  •   Olson, Rebecca E. (external author)
  •   Bellocchi, Alberto (external author)
  •   McKenzie, Jordan

Publication Date


  • 2020

Citation


  • Patulny, R., Mills, K., Olson, R., Bellocchi, A. & McKenzie, J. (2020). The emotional trade-off between meaningful and precarious work in new economies. Journal of Sociology,

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85088831007

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/asshpapers/128

Has Global Citation Frequency


Place Of Publication


  • United Kingdom