Vulnerability through lack of employment: Firms, inequality, and job loss (IP4-employability)

Research Agenda

The research group focuses on vulnerability from a labour market perspective and looks specifically at lack of employment. Job loss is a critical life event, and lack of employment is one of the most important stressors for people today (Atkinson & Duffy, 2017). The crisis of 2008 still threatens to destabilize the European Union through high and long-lasting unemployment. Job loss is a key problem in our age of digitalization, and it has the potential to spill over to other life domains, such as family or health. The LIVES research programme highlights that vulnerability has several dimensions, one of which is economical vulnerability.

Job loss affects many domains of life, affects several levels, and how job seekers deal with it can be hypothesized to depend on their accumulated reserves and current resources. Our research programme tackles the issue of job loss from several perspectives and thus in connection with all CCIs. We study how firms, which are situated on a meso level, more than the individual job seeker, contribute to job opportunities for vulnerable people (CCI2-multilevel). We develop new methods that allow studying long trends in joblessness and its implications for inequality using only short panels and thus allowing broad international comparisons where long-term panels are not available (CCI4-methodology). We discuss how to better support job search, by offering job seekers the tools to augment their cognitive reserves (CCI3-multidirectional).


Prof. Daniel Oesch (University of Lausanne)
Prof. Michele Pellizzari (University of Geneva)

  • UNIL: Giuliano Bonoli, Rafael Lalive, Leen Vandecasteele
Researchers and post-docs
  • UNIL: Esther Mirjam Girsberger Seelaus, Lena Hassani Nezhad, Alessandro di Nallo

Doctoral students

  • UNIL: Kalaivani Karunanethy, Fiona Köster, Luana Goviea Marx

  • UNIGE: Dan Orsholits, Doriana Tinello

Other staff

  • Nathalie Vigna