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Globalization, Uncertainty and Women’s Careers

An International Comparison

Edited by Hans-Peter Blossfeld and Heather Hofmeister

Globalization, Uncertainty and Women’s Careers assesses the effects of globalization on the life courses of women in thirteen countries across Europe and America in the second half of the 20th century.
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Chapter 4: Changes in Women’s Employment and Occupational Mobility in the Netherlands: 1995 to 2000

Matthijs Kalmijn and Ruud Luijkx


4. Changes in women’s employment and occupational mobility in the Netherlands: 1955 to 2000 Matthijs Kalmijn and Ruud Luijkx1 INTRODUCTION In the process of modernization, women’s employment patterns have changed dramatically. In virtually all western countries, an increasing number of married women remain in the labor force, even when they have children. In addition, the motivation to work for pay has shifted, with fewer women working as a secondary breadwinner in the home, and more women working to have an independent and attractive occupational career (Blossfeld and Hakim 1997; Van der Lippe and Van Dijk 2001). These changes entail that women’s employment patterns have become more stable and more continuous. In essence, their careers have come to look more like the careers of men. Underlying causes for this convergence in employment patterns lie in the fundamental elements of the modernization process: an increasing demand for service sector workers, the expansion of higher education and the erosion of traditional norms and values about gender and family roles (Davis 1984). In the last two decades of the twentieth century, societies faced new structural changes. Although these changes were probably a logical consequence of the modernization process, they were so different in nature that they are believed to add up to a new transformation (Alderson 1999; Blossfeld et al. 2005). Central elements of this transformation are the internationalization of markets and the rise of new information and communication technologies. These alterations have led to a process of globalization in which economic, social and...

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