Unemployment and volunteering — previous research revisited

Abstract

In the following chapter, I shall give an overview of the research which has already been done regarding the interrelation between unemployment and volunteering. By analysing the previous research, I aim at showing from a comparative perspective what we know already about the factors which increase the individual risk of unemployment as well as the factors which increase the chances that a person decides to volunteer. It shall become apparent that similar factors influence both, an unemployed person’s chances of re-employment as well as the likelihood that he or she gets involved in volunteer work.83 In the following part of the chapter, I turn to the central theme of this study: the interrelation between unemployment and volunteering. I follow the transitions from employment to unemployment and back, and report existing findings on the role of volunteering in this process. I start by presenting findings on the effect of unemployment on social networks and volunteering. I then proceed to the opposite causal direction, namely the influence of social networks and volunteering on re-employment chances. Not least, I discuss the possibility of volunteering as an alternative to paid work. I present studies which have discussed the possibility that volunteering contributes to the transition from unemployment to economic inactivity, especially of women. Throughout the chapter, I pay special attention to studies analysing the situation in Germany and Great Britain. This focus is justified by the institutional and cultural differences related to unemployment and volunteering alike, which make it important to understand the phenomena in the social context in which my own study is situated.

Keywords

Labour Market Civic Engagement Volunteer Work Unemployment Duration Active Labour Market Policy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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References

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    The two countries are characterised by different naturalisation policies: While Germany has had a strong orientation towards the ius sanguinis until the legal reform (Staatsangehörigkeitsrecht) in January 2000, Great Britain was characterised by an earlier focus on the ius soli, granting citizenship to the children of a parent who is resident in the UK and holds Indefinite Leave to Remain or Right of Abode (for an overview on the legal regulations of citizenship in the member states of the European Union, see Mester 2000). These legal differences lead to a higher proportion of citizens of the total population, namely 96.2% in Great Britain vs 91.3% in Germany (Eurostat 2000, quoted in Kley 2004: 175). The different traditions of naturalisation are also reflected in the wording of survey questions which ask in Great Britain for ethnical background, in Germany for nationality.Google Scholar
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