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Emerging Intergenerational Dynamics between Cooperation and Competition

Olga Jubany    Universitat de Barcelona, Espanya    

Juan Arasanz    Universitat de Barcelona, Espanya    

Fabio Perocco    Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia, Italia    



Stemming from the understanding that heterogeneity and dynamism are both inherent in our current societies, as reflected within the internal diversity of workers’ age groups, this chapter argues for the significance of the rich intersectional diversity of the workers that compose the constructed collectives such as those of younger or older workers. To this aim it proposes an exploration of workers interaction beyond constructed age group to unravel the richness –and potential, of intergenerational dynamics. The chapter reveals how current debates on intergenerational synergies are masking the increase in social inequalities on the basis of socioeconomic status within each generation. It exposes how polices aimed at balancing contributions and benefits in line with life expectancy incite the risk of increasing inequalities among future retirees. This, in turn, questions the extent to which social dialogue anticipates the impact of policy changes on the traditional age management practices and intergenerational labour market imbalances. Based on qualitative empirical results the chapter exposes the damage that the construction of collective workers as a group outside the ideal type worker infers. This is recognised by the lack of awareness and the absence innovative approaches to age diversity management in collective bargaining, which contrasts with shared expectations of increased future competition between age groups for scarce employment opportunities.

Copyright: © 2015 Olga Jubany, Juan Arasanz, Fabio Perocco. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.