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Forms of employment

Permanent employment is the main rule for employment in the Norwegian working life. But there are alternative affiliations. Fafo has studied exceptions from this main rule in a number of projects. These projects concern fixed term jobs, temporary agency work and zero-hours contracts.

Fafo monitors the development related to forms of employment contracts and how these change over time. What is the extent of the use of fixed term contracts? What characterizes the growth in the temporary work agency sector and how does this growth relate to major changes in the Norwegian working life in recent years? Why do employers use alternatives to permanent employment and what are the consequences for the employees in question? We are also looking at how legislation and regulation though collective agreements may affect the various types of contracts and affiliations.


  • Alsos, K., & Evans, C. (2018). Temporary work agencies: Triangular disorganization or multilevel regulation? European Journal of Industrial Relations. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959680118790819

  • Svalund, J. & Nielsen, R. A. (2017). Midlertidig ansettelse i Norge – en vei inn i stabilt arbeid? Søkelys på arbeidslivet, 01-02(34).

  • Svalund, S. & Berglund, T. (2017). Fixed-term employment in Norway and Sweden: A pathway to labour market marginalization? European Journal of Industrial Relations, 1 –17.

  • Svalund, J. & Nielsen, R. A. (2017). Midlertidig ansettelse i Norge – en vei inn i stabilt arbeid? Tja, det kommer an på. Foredrag på Fafo-båten, Arendalsuka 17. august, i en debatt med ungdomspolitikere.

  • Berglund, T., Nielsen, R., Reichenberg, O. & Svalund, J. (2017). Temporary contracts, employment trajectories and dualisation: a comparison of Norway and Sweden. Paper, Industrial Relations Conference Europe (IREC) 2017, Warsawa.

  • Nielsen, R. A. & Svalund, J. (2016). Fixed-term employment in Norway: Long-term consequences for annual wages. Paper, Nordic working life conference 2016, Tampere.

  • Svalund, J. & Berglund, T. (2016). Fixed-term employment in Norway and Sweden: pathway to labour market marginalisation? Paper, Nordic working life conference 2016, Tampere.

  • Svalund, J., Peixoto, A. & Jesnes, K. (2016). Employers’ use of fixed-term contracts across industries in Norway and Sweden. Does regulation matter? Paper, Nordic working life conference 2016, Tampere.

  • Friberg, Jon Horgen (2016), The rise and implications of temporary staffing as a "migration industry" in Norway. Nordic Journal of Migration Research 6(2) 2016

  • Vulkan, P., A. Saloniemi, et al. (2015). "Job Insecurity and Mental Well-Being in Finland, Norway, and Sweden." Nordic Journal of working life studies 5(2): 33-53.
  • Svalund, J. (2013). "Holdninger til arbeidslivsregulering: Hva betyr jobbtrygghet og arbeidsmarkedsposisjon? [Attitudes towards labour market regulation: The significance of job security and labour market position]." Søkelys på arbeidslivet 30(4): 295-312.

  • Svalund, J. (2013). Labour market institutions, mobility and dualization in the Nordic countries. Nordic Journal of working life studies, 3(1), 123-144.

  • Svalund, J., Casinowsky, G. B. et al. (2013). Stress testing the Nordic models: Manufacturing labour adjustments during crisis. European Journal of Industrial Relations, 19(3), 183-200.

  • Svalund, J. & Kervinen, H. (2013). Trade union power during labour adjustments – comparison of company-level cases. Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research, 19(4), 489-505.

  • Svalund, J. (2013). Adjusting labour through crisis: A three industry comparison. Economic and Industrial Democracy: first published online October 9, 2013

  • Ødegård, A. M., Berge, Ø. & Alsos, K. (2012). A case study of temporary work agencies in the Norwegian construction sector – a growing informal market beyond regulation? Transfer, 18(4).

  • Eldring, L. (2011), Posted workers in Norway: Win-win or lose-lose? CLR-News 1/2011, p. 10-15, European Institute for Construction Labour Research.

  • Engelstad, F., Storvik, A. E., Svalund, J. & Hagen, I. M. (2003). Makt og demokrati i arbeidslivet. Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk (Makt- og demokratiutredningen).



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