The rise in absenteeism: disentangling the impacts of cohort, age and time
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In recent years, a number of welfare state economies, including Norway, have experienced substantial increases in sickness absence. Using longitudinal individual register data for virtually all Norwegian employees, we examine the remarkable rise since the early 1990s, with emphasis on disentangling the roles of cohort, age, and time. We show that individual age-adjusted absence propensities have risen even more than aggregate absence rates from 1993 to 2005, which casts doubt on the popular hypotheses that the rise was due to the inclusion into the workforce of young or marginal workers with weaker work-norms or poorer health.
KeywordsSick leave Work-norms Multicollinearity
JEL ClassificationC23 I38 J22
This paper is part of the project “Absenteeism in Norway—Causes, Consequences, and Policy Implications”, financed by the Norwegian Research Council (grant #187924). We thank the Editor and two anonymous referees for useful comments.
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