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Nonstandard Career Trajectories and Their Various Forms

By Geneviève Fournier, Charles Bujold, Geneviève Fournier, Charles Bujold and Université Laval Québec


A sample of 124 participants (62 men, 62 women) was used in this qualitative research study of people having experienced nonstandard work for the last 3 years. Those participants were met for individual semistructured interviews of approximately 2 hours in length. On the basis of a content analysis with the use of the NUD*IST analysis software, 4 trajectories and 14 subtrajectories were identified: ascending (constant progression, final recovery, uncertain outcome), descending (sudden drop, caught in a trap, long descent, noninsertion), interesting maintenance (accepted job insecurity, project continuity, new project), and uninteresting maintenance (bogged down, leitmotif, adapted, and 180 degrees). The descending and uninteresting maintenance trajectories were predominant, comprising more than two thirds of the participants. Differences were found between genders, age groups, and educational levels. The results are discussed with respect to the scientific literature and to the differences that were observed

Topics: nonstandard work, career trajectories, qualitative research, gender
Year: 2009
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