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Elin Svarstad



PhD in Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)

Master of Business Administration (MBA), Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA)

Bachelor's degree in Cultural and Social Sciences (majoring in Law), University of Oslo (UiO)

Area of work

Current projects

Social security in periods of high cost of living
In this project, we will examine how selected Norwegian welfare benefits have developed over the last 15 years. Do the benefits keep pace with the economic development, and does the welfare state adapt quickly enough when prices are rising sharply?
Engaging workplaces: A social partners perspective on youth activation
How can workplaces – encompassing employers, employees, and the organisational structures in which they are embedded – be reconfigured to facilitate the successful inclusion of vulnerable youth struggling to enter and retain a position in the labour market?
Wage levels in industries with extended collective agreements 2022

The project aims to assess the number of individuals who fall below or above the standardized wage rates in industries with extended collective agreements. The data source is Statistics Norway's wage statistics for 2022. The results will be compared to similar estimates for 2019-2021.

Bonus, collective agreement - or both?

The project will investigate the prevalence of bonuses in selected industries within the private sector, with a particular focus on linking the use of bonuses to whether the company is a party to a collective agreement.

Maintaining the leading sector wage bargaining model

Future of the Norwegian wage formation.

Unions, Productivity and Technology

In this project, we want to examine in more detail how the productivity development in Norwegian enterprises is linked to technological development and changes in the strength of the cooperation between the social partners at the micro level. We will also study how technological developments both influence and can be influenced by trade unions.

Mapping of the home delivery industry
This project combines quantitative and qualitative methods to map the home delivery industry. We will prepare an overview of the largest companies, the use of self-employed and employees, and wages and working conditions.
Wage inequality over time in the central government sector

The project aims to analyze wage inequality in the government sector (part of the public sector) and to identify the contributions from (a) differences in firm-specific wage-premia and (b) wage differences among colleagues within a firm.

Labour conditions in hotels, restaurants and bars post corona

Hotels, restaurants and bars were hit hard by the corona pandemic. In this project, we will study the "rebuilding" of this industry, and its possible effects on working conditions. The results may also have more general relevance for the service industries in the private sector.

Fafo publications

Other publications

Completed projects

Investigation of the Consequences of Various Main Collective Agreements in the Government Sector

Since 2016, the government sector has had two identical main collective agreements. This project aims to illuminate the consequences of two different main collective agreements in the government sector's tariff area. Specifically, the assessments should relate to the relationship between central and local wage formation, consideration for minimum wage, low wages, and equal pay, the preservation of flexibility regarding changes and adjustments in the labour market, the ability to recruit and retain competent workforce, handling of the unorganized, and consideration for non-negotiability and equal treatment.

Wages in industries with general application of collective agreement

The project will investigate the extent of wages below and above the collectively agreed minimum wage rates in industries comprised by the general application of collective agreements. The data used in the project are Statistics Norway's earnings statistics for 2020.

Permanently low-paid workers – scope and characteristics

The project will be based on wage statistics and register data, and examine the extent of and characteristics of permanently low paid workers in Norway. More specifically, the characteristics of the people, their jobs, and where in the labour market they are located will be mapped. Furthermore, an econometric analysis will be made to determine whether the permanently low-wage earners were more likely to lose their jobs when the corona crisis hit Norway in 2020.

Wage development in the government sector

The project will examine wage development among selected occupational groups in the government sector in the period 2004–2019.

Employers and collective agreements

In this project, we will examine employers' attitudes towards, and motivation for organizing in employers' associations and entering into collective agreements. Among other things, we will investigate whether there are systematic differences between companies with and without collective agreements and organized and unorganized companies.

LO's youth initiative

Does LO's youth initiative lead to active members and union representatives?