The decline in middle-skilled employment in 12 European countries: New evidence for job polarisation

Is the middle class shrinking? This article contributes to the debate on job polarisation in Europe. Based on data from the European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS) and looking at 12 European countries, it shows that there is an evident trend towards job polarisation. While this polarisation takes various forms, it is clearly the highest- and lowest-skilled jobs that have increased most rapidly among the active population over the past 20 years, to the detriment of middle-skilled jobs. The article then goes on to demonstrate that polarisation also exists when it comes to working conditions insofar as the lowest-skilled jobs are also where the most precarious employment conditions are found. Conversely, the remaining middle-skilled jobs are relatively shielded from this decline in working conditions.


Author(s) C. Peugny
Language English
Year of publication Mar, 2019
Journal Research and Politics
Volume, Number 2019, January-March
Page(s) 7
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