De economie van de arbeid: zelfde uitgangspunt, nieuwe inzichten | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 25, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0169-2216
  • E-ISSN: 2468-9424


Labour economics: same assumptions, different insights

Labour economics: same assumptions, different insights

In the past 25 years, the economic analysis of labour issues was dominated by the neoclassical theory, which starts from rational, utility maximizing subjects. Complemented with the human capital theory and institutional analysis, the neoclassical theory has proved to be a very flexible theory, capable of analysing a diversity of subjects, ranging from labour supply and life course patterns to wage formation, earnings distribution and unemployment. This yielded various new insights, in particular with respect to imperfect (asymmetrical) information and the role of institutions (e.g., labour market regulation, trade unions). Labour economics has had a profound influence on labour policies in the past quarter of a century. Future economic research of labour issues might benefit from incorporating sociological and socio-psychological perspectives.


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