Recent Changes in Work Force Participation among Elderly in India: Evidence from National Sample Survey Data

Antara Dhar, University of Calcutta
Mousumi Dutta, Presidency University

This paper examines recent changes in workforce participation rates (WFPR) among the aged population in India using unit-level data from National Sample Survey Organization survey on “Employment and Unemployment”. Two rounds of data are used—55th round (1999-2000) and 66th round (2009-10). This enables us to explore the changes caused by the sweeping globalization of the Indian economy. Our analysis reveals that WFPR has decreased over the study period., particularly among those with low levels of education and household expenditure. We also find that informalization has decreased among elderly workers. Results also indicate that job squeeze within the formal sector has led to shift of younger workers to the informal sector. The ensuing intensification of competition for informal sector jobs has reduced work opportunities for the elderly. As a result, aged workers concentrate in low pay-occupations.

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Presented in Poster Session 6: Population Aging; Gender, Race and Ethnicity