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Attitudes Among Male and Female University Professors, and other Categories of University Employees, to Working up to and Beyond Normal Retirement Age

Journal article
Authors Roland Kadefors
Joseph Schaller
Per-Olof Thång
Elin Pestat
Published in Nordic Journal of Working Life Studies
Volume 6
Issue 1
Pages 133-146
ISSN 2245-0157
Publication year 2016
Published at Department of Education and Special Education
Department of Sociology and Work Science
Department of Psychology
Pages 133-146
Language en
Keywords retirement intentions, academic employment, gender, older workers, perceived health, work satisfaction
Subject categories Applied Psychology, Demography, Work Sciences, Older people and ageing


A study was undertaken in order to identify variables predicting the willingness of male and female university professors, and other employment categories, to work up to and beyond normal retirement age (65 years). Employees were asked by means of a questionnaire about their willingness to continue working to age 67, or to age 70, if they were given the chance. Hierarchical multiple regression analysis was carried out (N=3019; 59.8 % women and 40.2 % men). The interest to continue working into old age was significantly higher in men than in women p<0.01). Among independent variables, age, position and work satisfaction predicted women’s as well as men’s interest to work to age 67 and 70, whereas among women also perceived health predicted the willingness to work to age 67. Professors and lecturers were the categories showing the highest interest to work to age 70, compared to administrative and technical personnel; men showed significantly higher interest than women among lecturers and administrative personnel. The study emphasizes the effects of position and gender on willingness to continue working into old age, but identifies in addition also work satisfaction and age as significant predictors.

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