Decent Working Time. New trends, new issues

Based on the results of the Ninth International Symposium on Working Time (Paris, 26-28 February 2004). Provides an exploration of current developments in working time in the industrialized world; how those developments vary in different countries and under different sets of socio-economic circumstances; and the public and enterprise policies that are best suited to addressing these developments.

This collection, comprised of papers from some of the leading international scholars in the field, reflects on the profound changes in the nature of working time, and indeed the nature of employment itself in the industrialized world.

Including international comparative analysis alongside national case studies, this volume offers a wealth of information on the new trends which have emerged over the past decades - all of which were discussed at the recent 9th International Symposium on Working Time, Paris (2004). It looks at the increasing use of results-based employment relationships for managers and professionals, and the increasing fragmentation of time to more closely tailor staffing needs to customer requirements (e.g., short-hours, part-time work). Moreover, as operating/opening hours rapidly expand toward a 24-hour and 7-day economy, the book considers how this has resulted in a growing diversification, decentralization, and individualization of working hours, as well as an increasing tension between enterprises' business requirements and workers' needs and preferences regarding their hours.

This new reality has raised some other challenging issues as well and the volume addresses those such as increasing employment insecurity and instability, time-related social inequalities, particularly in relation to gender, workers' ability to balance their paid work with their personal lives, and even the synchronization of working hours with social times, such as community activities. In addition, the book offers valuable insights on how policy-makers, academics, and the social partners can together help further develop and refine an effective policy framework for advancing "decent working time."