Insecure Work and the Mental Health of Workers and their Families

Funding Agency

Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Grant; Beyond Blue

Project period



David Johnston, Michael Shields, Deborah Cobb-Clark , Sonja de New, Rachel Mutch

National Interest Test Statement

Mental illness constitutes a major burden on labour market productivity, with sickness absence, reduced work performance and long-term incapacity due to mental health problems costing Australia over $10 billion per year. Consequently, businesses and government organisations have begun to focus on the wellbeing of workers, and how workplaces can be better organised to improve wellbeing and productivity. The aim of this project is to provide new policy-relevant evidence on how insecure work and job insecurity influence the mental health and wellbeing of workers, their families, and the broader community. It should also aid in the identification of populations, industries and geographical areas that are, due to economic or labour market upheaval, at high-risk of health problems. Ultimately, this evidence should help in the development of targeted, cost-effective workplace and employment programs.