Journal article

Chasing rainbows: How many educational qualifications do young people need to acquire meaningful, ongoing work?

Jenny Chesters, Johanna Wyn

Journal of Sociology | SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD | Published : 2019


The increasingly complex relationship between educational qualifications and employment is an integral, yet little-explored dimension of the labour market developments that have come to be referred to as the ‘gig economy’. This article explores the changing meaning and relevance of education through an analysis of young people’s employment outcomes in terms of employment status, having a job in their field of study and job satisfaction. It shows that while higher levels of education do provide some protection from unemployment, the relationship is murky. A relatively large proportion of highly educated young adults are experiencing underemployment and precarious work. Young women are less en..

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Awarded by Australian Research Council (ARC)

Funding Acknowledgements

The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This phase of the Life Patterns research program titled 'Learning to make it work: education, work and wellbeing in young adulthood' is funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC) from 2016-2020 (DP160101611).