International Trends in Insecure Work

An increase in insecure forms of work has been identified in most European countries. Fixed-term contracts, temporary working arrangements and employment via agencies have proliferated, arguably undermining ‘standard’ employment relationships and the securities they offer. Yet, while there is widespread agreement on the international expansion of insecure forms of work, the drivers and subsequent nature of that insecurity are thought to be highly variable. This report seeks to provide an account of these variations, in order to provide a concise and comparative account of international trends in insecure work.


This report will be based on European Labour Force survey data, and supplemented with case study research purposively selected to demonstrate variance.

Timescale and funder

The project is funded by the Trade Union Congress. It began in January 2017 and will be completed in April 2017, when the final report will be published.

Research programmes