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Who is Eligible for Telework? Exploring the Fast-Growing Acceptance of and Ability to Telework in Sweden, 2005–2006 to 2011–2014

Journal article
Authors Erik Elldér
Published in Social Sciences
Volume 8
Issue 7
ISSN 2076-0760
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Economy and Society, Unit for Human Geography
Department of Economy and Society
Language en
Keywords telework; telecommuting; eligibility; Sweden; information and communication technology
Subject categories Economics and Business, Business Administration, Economic Geography, Human Geography, Social and Economic Geography


The share of Swedish employees eligible for telework, that is, when work tasks and contractual agreement allow, increased from 22% in 2005–2006 to 35% in 2011–2014. This article explores this fast diffusion of telework eligibility. Micro data from representative national surveys are used to examine how increasing opportunities for telework have spread among different groups of employees and different parts of the labour market and to examine the factors that increase or decrease the probability of being eligible for telework. We find significant increases in telework eligibility in almost all categories of workers and all labour market sectors. However, employees are clearly grouped into those achieving rapid gains in telework eligibility and those achieving such gains much more slowly. Telework continues to be primarily available to high-status segments of the labour market. Information and communication technology and technical solutions increasingly appear to be key factors enabling telework.

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