2016 Hellman Fellow
Assistant Professor, Sociology
Project Title: The Effects of Work Hour Instability on the Wellbeing of Workers and their Families: Evidence from Changes in Company Practices and Law
Many hourly workers experience substantial volatility in hourly schedules and total hours worked each week. Such instability may have profound consequences for worker and child health and wellbeing. There is growing pressure on employers to make changes to scheduling practices and local governments are beginning to enact laws to regulate these practices.
These and other coming changes to employer scheduling practices offer a unique opportunity to estimate the effects of short-notice and unpredictable scheduling on health and wellbeing. However, the lack of existing suitable data has precluded empirical investigation of how this scheduling practice affects health and wellbeing. This project develops and deploys an innovative approach to survey data collection from targeted samples of service-sector workers, takes advantage of “natural experiments” created as cities or employers change work-scheduling law or practice, and thus builds the evidence base on the relationship between schedule instability and health.
“I’m incredibly grateful to the Hellman Fellows fund for genorously supporting my research. This support makes it possible for me to act quickly to study the effects of workplace practices on workers and their families in a time of rapid change.”