The Price Of Deviance: Social Norms And Access To Job Search Assistance
Assistance in job search is a valuable social resource that can markedly benefit its recipients. However, recent studies have shown that people who have information about jobs frequently withhold assistance from job seekers. In other words, knowledge of job information, the ability to help, and ties to job seekers by no means guarantee that information holders will provide assistance. Although previous research provides a framework for understanding how information holders make decisions about whether to provide assistance, the literature has not yet established that these mechanisms actually impact outcomes for job seekers. This paper addresses this gap through an examination of assistance flows in Japan, using the Working Persons Survey 2000. Based on previous research, I hypothesize that information holders more often withhold assistance from job seekers who violate social norms. I then test whether deviance decreases the likelihood of receiving assistance on sample of male job changers, and find that job seekers pay a price for deviant behavior. This demonstrates the importance of social norms in explaining assistance flows, illustrates the limits of purely structural analysis, and has implications for the study of inequality in Japan and beyond.
social capital; Japan; labor and employment
Weeden, Kim; Sanyal, Paromita
M.A. of Sociology
Master of Arts
dissertation or thesis