Inequalities in the disruption of paid work during the Covid-19 pandemic: A world systems analysis of core, semi-periphery, and periphery states

Valizade, D., Ali, M., Stuart, M. (2022) Industrial Relations

This article reveals the extent of international inequalities in the immediate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on participation in paid work. Drawing on World Systems Theory (WST) and a novel quasi-experimental analysis of nationally representative household panel surveys across 20 countries, the study finds a much sharper increase in the likelihood of dropping out of paid work in semi-periphery and periphery states relative to core states. We establish a causal link between such international disparities and the early trajectories of state interventions in the labor market. Further analysis demonstrates that within all three world systems delayed, less stringent interventions in the labor market were enabled by right-wing populism but mitigated by the strength of active labor market policies and collective bargaining.

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