Job Quality and Innovation: A Virtuous Circle in the EU?
From a theoretical point of view, we will refer to institutionalist approaches of innovation and job quality, building on the innovation systems approach (Amable et al, 1997; Lundvall, 2007) and on the employment regimes approach (Gallie, 2007). These approaches put the stress on the role of institutions and regulation in shaping national “regimes” of innovation and job quality. In our analysis we will make hypotheses on the relevant institutions that may contribute to both innovation and job quality and explain heterogeneity in the relationships between innovation and job quality at the national level.
We will rely on a multidimensional definition of job quality, involving four main dimensions, socio-economic security, working conditions, training and work-life balance. Innovation will be captured through the Oslo manual standard definitions, distinguishing between product and process innovation (technological innovation), and organizational and marketing innovation (non-technological innovation).
Empirically our analyses will build a taxonomy of innovation and labour market regimes, using the appropriate quantitative methods (Primary Component Analysis and Classifications), with the aim of critically assessing the relationships among the different aggregate typologies. This work will be carried out at a cross-national level and will be based on both specific dimensions of job quality (for instance, wages or employment contracts) and synthetic variables (proposed in previous works from the authors, like Davoine et al., 2008, Muñoz de Bustillo et al., 2011).
In this task, several databases will be used. Regarding innovation, we will use the Community Innovation Survey (CIS), which includes detailed information about innovation (share of innovating firms, related to product, process, organisation and marketing innovations). With relation to labour market issues, we will exploit the European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS), with core labour market variables, and the European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS), with very detailed information on employment and working conditions.