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Project "Atypical Employment"

Project Title

Atypical Employment – Characteristics and Types of Precarious Jobs


Atypical employment has been on the rise in the past few years, and more and more people are being employed in such jobs. Experts have already started to speak of the "erosion of normal employment contracts". In this context, it is important to underline that this development is not only positive. On the contrary, the majority of these new jobs, which are at variance with the social and labour laws applicable to "normal employment contracts", may be considered insecure.

In a first step, the literature on the topic is analysed to identify the atypical jobs and the extent of the precarious characteristics ascribed to them. For this purpose, the principal criteria that classify a job as precarious must be defined.

In a second step, experts evaluate the definitions found in the specialised literature as to their practical relevance.

The third phase involves interviews with people working in atypical jobs. These interviews are designed as focussed, biographical interviews. The goal of the interviews is to confirm, extend or even question the definitions found on the basis of empirical evidence. The different types of precarious employment will be defined using the analysis and interpretation of the interviews. Based on this new typology, a questionnaire will be developed that will include the different characteristics of precarious employment. The questionnaire will be tested in a preliminary testing phase. The qualitative typology will be verified by means of cluster analyses and logical linking.

Project Management

Peter Fleissner

Project Team

Edith Enzenhofer (SORA), Isbabella Kaupa (SORA), Brigitte Mosberger (abif), Karin Steiner (abif)

Project Start


Project End



Jubiläumsfonds der Österreichischen Nationalbank (ÖNB)