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Ålder och arbete: Föreställningar om ålderns betydelse för medelålders tjänstemän
Stockholm University.
1997 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Age and Work : Conceptions of the Significance of Age for Middle-Aged Employees (English)
Abstract [en]

This dissertation addresses conceptions and experiences of the significance of being middle-aged in working life. Its main goal has been the identification and increased understanding of various aspects of the significance of age.

The main study is based on interviews with 24 people, 12 men and 12 women, aged 45-54 years. Half of the interviewees were unemployed, and most of them had a university degree and managerial experience. The foci of the interviews were age barriers, recruitment, competence, leadership and attitudes toward work.

The results of the interview study show that the interviewees hold positive self-images. Maturity, life experience and social competence are considered to be advantages, especially for middle-aged managers. The results also show that chronological age may be of significance as a hindrance above all in the recruitment process, in which employers prefer younger applicants. This preference has been explained as being due to rapid changes taking place in society, new technology and younger people's more current education. However, according to the conceptions of the interviewees, there may be other more latent reasons as well, such as a need for sorting and categorizing people, power and control, prejudices, stereotypes, ageism and age discrimination.

Three complementary studies regarding specific age requirements in job advertisements were carried out - two involving the Swedish daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter and a third involving the Berliner Morgenpost. The results of these studies show that an age requirement was found in 12 per cent of the Swedish job advertisements in 1992, in 13 per cent in 1995 and in 17 per cent of the Berliner Morgenpost advertisements in 1997. 25-35 years was the most common age interval in the Swedish job advertisements, whereas in the Berliner Morgenpost the age intervals 25-40, 30-40 and 30-45 years were just as common as the 25-35 age interval

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Stockholms Universitet , 1997. , 226 p.
Doktorsavhandlingar från Pedagogiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet, ISSN 1104-1625 ; 85
Keyword [en]
Age, ageism, age barriers, age discrimination, attitudes toward work, competence, employee, job advertisement, leadership, middle-aged, recruitment, unemployed, work
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-61751ISBN: 91-7153-634-5OAI: diva2:437389
Public defence
1997-10-04, 10:00
Available from: 2011-08-29 Created: 2011-08-29 Last updated: 2011-08-29Bibliographically approved

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