Marriage, Precarious Work, and Well-being in Japan

Kumiko Shibuya , Chinese University of Hong Kong
Eric Fong, Chinese University of Hong Kong

In this paper, we examine whether non-standard work arrangements are associated with individual well-being, measured in terms of mental health and life satisfaction, and how the normative environment surrounding marriage and the family can alter the relationship. Using a panel of about 4000 individuals from the first 8 waves of the Japanese Life Course Panel Survey (JLPS), 2007-2014, we demonstrate the consequence of non-standard employment under the context of traditional gender roles within marriage. Our fixed effects estimates find (1) non-standard employment is strongly associated with poor mental health for married men but better mental health for married women, (2) being married is associated with higher life satisfaction for both men and women, and (3) regardless of gender, non-standard employment is negatively associated with life satisfaction, especially for those who are not married. The results suggest the importance of marriage and normative environment in setting how non-standard employment is perceived.

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 Presented in Session 82. Economic Instability and Family Well-being