Even during economic expansions and periods of robust employment growth, millions of workers in the United States face economic insecurity and precarious working conditions. Low paysafety hazards, lack of bargaining powerunstable schedulesdiscrimination and harassment at work, little access to benefitssurveillance and lack of privacy, and insufficient opportunities for upward career advancement all affect a substantial share of the U.S. labor force and all reduce job quality for workers.

And because most research finds that overall job quality in the United States has declined over the past four decades, lack of access to good employment opportunities both exacerbates existing economic disparities and generates challenges for robust and broad-based economic growth.

Studying job quality acknowledges that research should go beyond top-line statistics, such as employment growth and the unemployment rate, when analyzing the state of the labor market. Additionally, even though pay is an important—and perhaps the most important—component of a good job, there are other employment attributes that shape workers’ experience, opportunities, and employment outcomes. These nuances are part of what makes this topic so ripe for future research that can contribute to the existing body of work on job quality.

Read the full article about quality employment for U.S. workers at Equitable Growth.