Gender, part-time employment and employee participation in Australian workplaces

Raymond Markey, Ann Hodgkinson, Jo Kowalczyk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The international trend in the growth and incidence of “non-standard employment”, and its highly gendered nature, is well documented. Similarly, interest in employee involvement or participation by academics and practitioners has seen the emergence of a rapidly growing body of literature. Despite the continued interest in each of these areas, the literature is relatively silent when it comes to where the two areas intersect, that is, what the implications are for employee participation in the growth of non-standard employment. This paper seeks to redress this relative insularity in the literature by examining some broad trends in this area in Australia. The literature lacks one clear, accepted definition of “non-standard” employment. For ease of definition, and because of the nature of the available data, we focus on part-time employment in this paper. The paper analyses data from the Australian Workplace Industrial Relations Survey of 1995 (AWIRS 95). It tests the hypotheses that part-time employees enjoy less access to participatory management practices in the workplace than their full-time counterparts, and that this diminishes the access to participation in the workplace enjoyed by female workers in comparison with their male colleagues, since the part-time workforce is predominantly feminised. These hypotheses were strongly confirmed. This has major implications for workplace equity, and for organisational efficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-150
Number of pages22
JournalEmployee Relations
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Australia
  • Gender
  • Part-time work


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