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Atypical employment and mental health

(in German)

Atypical employment such as part-time work, fixed-term employment and temporary agency work is a growing global phenomenon due to economic and political changes. In the political and scientific debate, the questions of whether atypical employment forms are precarious and whether they are associated with health impairments are often raised.

This article focuses on these questions by examining the association of various atypical employment forms and mental health. Selected results of the scoping review on atypical employment within the scope of the "Mental health in the working world" research project of the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) are presented.

The systematic review of studies on atypical employment (based on fixedterm employment, temporary agency work, part-time employment, (solo) self-employment and multiple job-holding) and mental health shows that individual forms of atypical employment are associated with certain mental health impairments. Among other things, the results indicate a correlation between part-time employment and depression as well a correlation between temporary agency work and depression. In contrast, fixed-term employment is less often linked to impairments of mental well-being than permanent employment.

The review illustrates that atypical employment as a whole is not generally associated with mental health impairments and that the health risk of atypical employment must be evaluated in relation to the specific type of atypical employment.

Furthermore, the existing studies suggest that the (mental) health risk of atypical employment is determined by how the work is designed and how it fits with the individual needs of the employees.

This article is published in the Journal "Arbeitsmedizin, Sozialmedizin, Umweltmedizin : ASU, Zeitschrift für medizinische Prävention", Volume 53, Issue December 2018, pp. 32-37.

Please download the article "Atypical employment and mental health" (in German only).

Bibliographic information

L. Hünefeld:
Atypische Beschäftigung und psychische Gesundheit. 
in: Arbeitsmedizin, Sozialmedizin, Umweltmedizin : ASU, Zeitschrift für medizinische Prävention, Volume 53, Sonderheft 2018. pages 32-37, Project number: F 2353

Research Project

Project numberF 2353 StatusCompleted Project Mental health in the working world - determining the current state of scientific evidence

Find out more : Mental health in the working world - determining the current state of scientific evidence …