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A Comprehensive Interpretation of Voluntary and Under-Remunerated Work

Carlo Borzaga

Chapter 2 in Paid and Unpaid Labour in the Social Economy. An International Perspective, 2009, pp 11-32 from AIEL - Associazione Italiana Economisti del Lavoro

Abstract: The aim of the essay is to contribute to development of an unitary interpretation of the supply of labour in nonprofit organizations. The paper shows that agents supply their labour on the basis of a mix of motivations, whose composition is influenced by numerous personal, cultural, and vocational factors. Empirical and experimental analyses, and especially research on under-remunerated workers in nonprofit organizations with an explicit social mission, show that volunteers are also driven by self-regarding preferences, while remunerated workers may have preferences that are different from the maximization of immediate or deferred monetary income. It is possible to take account of this pluralism of motivations and agents by modifying the utility function so that it includes all the different types of motivation. The resulting allocation of workers and volunteers among sectors and enterprises can therefore be considered efficient also in the presence of individuals who are not paid or who are systematically paid less than others.

Keywords: nonprofit institutions; unpaid work; under-remunerated work; work motivations. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D64 J28 J40 L31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2009
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