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How institutions matter for job characteristics, quality and experiences: A comparison of home care work for older people in Australia and Sweden
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work. Macquarie University, Australia.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6956-7329
2016 (English)In: Work, Employment and Society, ISSN 0950-0170, E-ISSN 1469-8722Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

This article seeks to understand a puzzling finding: that workers in publicly-funded home care for older people in Australia, compared to those in Sweden, feel that they are better able to meet their clients’ needs, that their workplaces are less pressed, and that their work is less burdensome and more compatible with their family and social commitments. This finding seems to challenge expectations fostered by comparative sociological research that job quality and care services are inferior in Australia compared to Sweden. Informed by comparative institutionalist theory and care research, the structures and dynamics of the care systems in the two countries are analyzed, along with findings from the NORDCARE survey of home care workers conducted in Sweden in 2005 (n=166) and Australia in 2010 (n=318). Differences in the work and working conditions in the two countries are explained by the dynamic interaction of national institutional and highly gendered sector-level effects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Australia, comparative institutionalism, gender, home care work, job quality, Sweden
National Category
Social Work
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-128999DOI: 10.1177/0950017015625601OAI: diva2:918921
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare
Available from: 2016-04-12 Created: 2016-04-12 Last updated: 2016-07-05

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Meagher, GabrielleSzebehely, Marta
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