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Profound social and economic transformations have taken place over the last two decades in modern societies. These changes are often referred to as globalization. The aim of this article is to examine whether processes of globalization have produced increasing convergence of employment-related aspects of national-level welfare regimes, industrial relation systems and mid-career employment paths among a set of industrialized nations. A theory of convergence is developed to explain the coercive-isomorphic and mimetic-imitation effects of globalization, followed by potential reasons for growing divergence. The study concludes that globalization has produced 'converging divergences' and not resulted in a simple convergence based on neoliberal and market employment-related policies that leads to a rise of patchwork careers for all employees. Rather, it has served to intensify existent differences between industrial relations in the welfare regime clusters of countries and accentuated within-country occupational class, educational and gender inequalities. © International Sociological Association.

Original publication




Journal article


International Sociology

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