Young adulthood in uncertain times: The association between sense of personal control and employment, education, personal relationships and health:

Published on Jun 1, 2019in Journal of Sociology
· DOI :10.1177/1440783318800767
Jenny Chesters8
Estimated H-index: 8
(University of Melbourne),
Jonathan F. Smith5
Estimated H-index: 5
(Monash University)
+ 4 AuthorsDan Woodman14
Estimated H-index: 14
(University of Melbourne)
Young adults in Australia, and in many other advanced countries, are more likely to be highly educated but less likely to be in full-time employment than their parents were. Although insecure employment has long been a feature of labour markets, increased labour flexibility in recent decades has resulted in insecure employment becoming entrenched. In this article, we draw on data from young people in their early twenties to examine the interrelationships between work and life. Although we focus on the association between precarious employment and sense of personal control, we also examine the interrelationships between sense of personal control, education, relationships and health. Rather than experiencing a short period of insecure employment before transitioning into permanent jobs, young people now experience a ‘new adulthood’ characterised by extended periods of insecurity, undermining their sense of personal control. Our aim is to identify what it takes to make a secure, healthy and meaningful life.
  • References (26)
  • Citations (0)
📖 Papers frequently viewed together
5 Citations
1 Citations
1 Author (Caroline Day)
1 Citations
78% of Scinapse members use related papers. After signing in, all features are FREE.
#1Melanie J Randle (UOW: University of Wollongong)H-Index: 13
#2Richard EckersleyH-Index: 17
Last. Leonie M Miller (UOW: University of Wollongong)H-Index: 7
view all 3 authors...
Abstract A survey of more than 2000 people in four countries examined levels of concern across 19 personal and 23 societal issues. On average, 49% were moderately or seriously concerned about the personal issues, with health, wellbeing and financial concerns topping the ranking. Country differences were small, but generational differences were substantial. An average of 58% of Generation Y were moderately or seriously concerned, compared to 35% of Pre-boomers, with significant differences for 14...
2 CitationsSource
#1Veerle Buffel (UGent: Ghent University)H-Index: 7
#2Sarah Missinne (UGent: Ghent University)H-Index: 7
Last. Piet Bracke (UGent: Ghent University)H-Index: 27
view all 3 authors...
The relationships between unemployment, mental health (care) and medication use among 50–65 year-old men (N = 11,789) and women (N = 15,118) are studied in Europe. Inspired by the social norm theory of unemployment, the relevance of regional unemployment levels and workplace closure are explored, using multilevel analyses of data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement. In line with the social norm theory, the results show that – only for men – displaced workers are less depressed...
13 CitationsSource
#1Johanna Wyn (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 29
#2Hernán Cuervo (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 8
Last. Dan Woodman (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 14
view all 4 authors...
This article addresses the paradox that, despite achieving educational participation exceeding their male peers, young women see fewer returns for this investment in the labour market. We argue tha...
8 CitationsSource
#1Jason Heyes (University of Sheffield)H-Index: 15
#2Mark Tomlinson (University of Sheffield)H-Index: 17
Last. Adam Whitworth (University of Sheffield)H-Index: 11
view all 3 authors...
Since the start of the economic crisis in 2008 there has been widespread concern with changes in the level and composition of unemployment. The phenomenon of underemployment has, however, received markedly less attention, although it too increased in extent following the start of the crisis. This article considers the consequences of underemployment for the subjective well-being of UK employees. Drawing on data from the 2006 and 2012 Employment and Skills Surveys, the article assesses how the Gr...
23 CitationsSource
#1Duncan Gallie (University of Oxford)H-Index: 31
#2Alan Felstead (Cardiff University)H-Index: 34
Last. Hande Inanc (OECD: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development)H-Index: 6
view all 4 authors...
Drawing on nationally representative data for British employees, the article argues for a more comprehensive concept of job insecurity, including not only job tenure insecurity but also job status insecurity, relating to anxiety about changes to valued features of the job. It shows that job status insecurity is highly prevalent in the workforce and is associated with different individual, employment and labour market characteristics than those that affect insecurity about job loss. It is also re...
42 CitationsSource
#1Jocelyne Clench-Aas (FHI: Norwegian Institute of Public Health)H-Index: 14
#2Ragnhild Bang Nes (University of Oslo)H-Index: 13
Last. Leif Edvard Aarø (FHI: Norwegian Institute of Public Health)H-Index: 33
view all 3 authors...
Purpose A number of studies have reported differences in sense of mastery and perceived control across different subgroups. Yet, few have examined measurement invariance, an important prerequisite for valid comparisons. This study examines the factorial structure and measurement invariance of the perceived constraints (PC) facet of Pearlin and Schooler’s (1981) Sense of Mastery Scale (SM) which is a commonly used short form of the widely used SM scale.
4 CitationsSource
#1Iain Campbell (RMIT: RMIT University)H-Index: 18
#2Robin Price (QUT: Queensland University of Technology)H-Index: 8
Discussion of the implications of precarious work for individual workers remains hesitant and often confused. A clear conceptualisation would separate out five analytical levels: precariousness in employment, precarious work, precarious workers individually and as an emerging class, and precarity as a general condition of social life. To illustrate the need to avoid slippage between the concepts of precarious work and precarious workers, we present one ‘theory-relevant’ example – full-time secon...
44 CitationsSource
#1Michael McGann (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 4
#2Kevin White (ANU: Australian National University)H-Index: 10
Last. Jeremy Moss (UNSW: University of New South Wales)H-Index: 6
view all 3 authors...
This article presents the results of a qualitative study of 72 workers in regional Victoria, Australia. Against the background of the growing casualization of the workforce it demonstrates the impact on the health and well-being of these workers, focusing on the intersection between psychosocial working conditions and health. In particular it focuses on the detrimental impact on workers’ sense of self-efficacy and self-esteem. It emphasizes how the job insecurity characteristic of non-standard...
12 CitationsSource
#1Hernán Cuervo (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 8
#2Johanna Wyn (University of Melbourne)H-Index: 29
8 CitationsSource
Empirical treatments of agency have not caught up with theoretical explication; empirical projects almost always focus on concurrent beliefs about one’s ability to act successfully without sufficiently attending to temporality. The authors suggest that understanding the modern life course necessitates a multidimensional understanding of subjective agency involving (a) perceived capacities and (b) perceived life chances, or expectations about what life holds in store. The authors also suggest tha...
56 CitationsSource
Cited By0
Scholars using the concept of ‘social generation’ are committed to understanding the relationship between social change and social inequality. However, in this article we raise a variety of concern...