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Published: 20 Mar, 2018

How to get from low-wage to better paid job positions

NEWS With funding from the Swedish Research Council, Anna Baranowska-Rataj, Department of Sociology, together with Daniel Larsson (Department of Sociology), Xavier de Luna (Umeå School of Business, Economics and Statistics) and Rikard Eriksson (Department of Geography and Economic History) will study young people with low wages in the labor market.

Previous research shows that for young people, starting a working life with a low-wage job may be a ‘trap’ in a labour market career. In this project the researchers will examine what conditions facilitate climbing up the earnings ladder and making a transition from low-wage to better paid job positions.Specifically, focus will be on the skill composition of the organisations’ workforce, potential knowledge spillovers within organizations and the moderating role of the economic conditions on regional labour markets. In other words, the researchers will examine whether having skilled peers at a workplace may help getting a better paid job for workers who started their labour market career with a low-wage job. Analyses whether upward wage mobility is more likely if there are many new vacancies emerging on the local labour market will also be done.
In order to address the research questions the Swedish register data which give an opportunity to observe individual labour market careers from the time point when people start their working life till their retirement, will be used. These data provide information about individual earnings of employees and at the same time provide detailed information about the characteristics of workplace peers and also about economic conditions on the local labour markets.