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Work and Social Inequalities in Health in Europe


Ingvar Lundberg, Thomas Hemmingsson and Christer Hogstedt

Equity in health is endorsed by most governments. But there is no progress in reducing the relative differences between different socioeconomic groups linked to the professional status. There are obvious reasons for class differences that include poverty, low education and certain life style factors. But do we know the true background of the differences? Why do blue-collar workers have less favourable health than white-collar workers? Is it due to selection of unhealthy workers to bad workplaces or due to the working conditions? This volume provides an overview of the importance of working conditions for social class differences in health. The magnitude of social class differences in health and the importance of working conditions for these differences are described for seven European countries and Massachusetts, USA. In a summary chapter conclusions are drawn regarding to what extent social class differences in health can be explained by working conditions. An agenda for future research is presented.
Contents: Ingvar Lundberg/Tomas Hemmingsson/Christer Hogstedt: Introductory Review and Background – Eva Støttrup Hansen: Denmark – Isabelle Niedhammer/Annette Leclerc: France – Richard Peter: Germany – Irene Houtman/Marije Evers: The Netherlands – Espen Dahl/Jon Ivar Elstad: Norway – John Wooding/David H. Wegman/Kimberly Rauscher: Massachusetts, USA – Joan Benach/Marcelo Amable/Carles Muntaner/Lucía Artazcoz/Imma Cortés/María Menéndez/Fernando G. Benavides: Spain – Mona Backhans/Peeter Fredlund: Sweden – Martin Hyde: United Kingdom – Karin Halldén: Globalisation, Work Intensity and Health Inequalities - A Cross-national Comparison – Lucía Artazcoz/Joan Benach/Carme Borrell/Imma Cortés: Health Inequalities in a Combined Framework of Work, Gender and Social Class – Ingvar Lundberg/Tomas Hemmingsson/Christer Hogstedt: Does Work Promote or Reduce Inequalities in Health?