03495 - Economic and Working Sociology

Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Docente: Roberto Rizza
  • Credits: 10
  • SSD: SPS/09
  • Language: Italian
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: First cycle degree programme (L) in Political, Social and International Sciences (cod. 8853)

Learning outcomes

Students should acquire capacities to interpret the current transformations of the economy, work, employment, welfare, and labor market policies from a comparative perspective.

Course contents

The course adopts a method of organizing teaching divided into several sections. One section consists of lectures and is aimed at introducing students to acquiring essential conceptual and theoretical tools. Another area, arranged in seminar mode, aims to apply knowledge and its deepening. Students are required to come to class having already read the assigned material and - in the case of seminars - will be asked to actively participate in using the knowledge acquired through individual readings to carry out in-depth thematic studies or case studies.

The topics addressed during the lectures and seminar part will be as follows:

- Modern market economies and capitalist economic systems, their transformation and variety, labor market changes, and regulation. Insight, from a comparative perspective, into the influence of cultural, social, and political factors.

The following concepts will be addressed.

- the regulation of the economy: the state, the market, and the household

- capitalisms in comparison: northern European capitalism, continental European capitalism, Anglo-Saxon capitalism, Mediterranean capitalism

- labor market changes from a comparative perspective: how labor demand changes in the service society and the new employment structure; women's work and gender inequalities; instability and precariousness of working careers.

- work and regulation: labor policies and labor policy regimes in Europe

- the relationship between politics and policies


Burroni L. (2016), Capitalismi a confronto. Istituzioni e regolazione dell'economia nei paesi europei, Bologna, Il Mulino

Reyneri E. (2017), Introduzione alla sociologia del mercato del lavoro, Bologna, Il Mulino. Capitoli: II. La nuova partecipazione al lavoro delle donne. VI. La domanda di lavoro nella società dei servizi. - VII. Flessibilità del lavoro e occupazioni instabili.

Rizza R., Scarano G. (2019), Nuovi modelli di politica del lavoro, Milano, Egea, Università Bocconi Editore

Some additional readings will be suggested concerning the seminars and students' presentations.

Teaching methods

The teaching is divided into a frontal module and a seminar module. Lectures by the lecturer will be alternated with group discussions and case studies aimed at learning and deepening the topics covered during the course. The students will give presentations.

Assessment methods

The exam is conducted in written form. Two tests will be held, one in the middle of the course, the other at the end of the course.

Both tests will last 2 hours, during which no books, notes or electronic media may be used. Each test consists of 3 questions, each referring to a topic covered in class and in the reference texts.

The written tests are intended to assess the critical and methodological skills developed by the students and their capacity to deal with the texts and topics addressed during the course. The supplementary activities carried out during the course will be assessed, with particular reference to the students' presentations.

Teaching tools

Videos, essays, and articles not included in the texts, but significant for the topics covered in class.
Slides and other teaching materials will be available to the students in electronic format on the Virtuale platform. Username and password are reserved for students enrolled at the University of Bologna.

Office hours

See the website of Roberto Rizza


Gender equality Decent work and economic growth Reduced inequalities

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.