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Research Programmes:

Labour Markets

Programme Overview

Most of the population depend, directly or indirectly, on the labour market for their livelihood. Hence, the functioning of the labour market is of crucial importance for material well-being and for the performance of economies. Research in the labour programme evaluates the effect of labour market institutions and policy interventions and looks at new trends in the labour market and how these changes affect different types of employers and employees.

The Labour Markets Programme concentrates on five main areas of research:

  • Labour Market Inequality: We look at labour market trends, including increasing job polarisation - the splitting of the labour market into high and low-wage work - which has contributed to the rapid rise of inequality in the UK, US and other advanced nations over the past 30 years

  • Labour Market Institutions and Policies: Our large body of research in this area covers unions, wage flexibility, minimum wages and welfare to work policies

  • Unemployment: Since the 1980s CEP researchers have been highly influential in developing the current framework for understanding unemployment, its consequences and related policies to combat it

  • Gender: The pay gap between men and women, although declining, remains substantial. In our research we have tried to understand its causes and why it has varied over time and across countries

  • Labour markets in developing countries: We focus on the causes and consequences of child labour in poor countries, education decisions, and trends in labour supply and demand