Job Displacement and Social Participation: Findings for a Cohort of Joiners

We examine the effects of job displacement, an involuntary event associated with socioeconomic and psychological decline, on social participation. Using more than 45 years of panel data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, we find that job displacement is associated with significant, long-term lower probabilities of subsequent involvement with various forms of social participation for workers displaced during their prime earnings years; displacement is not associated with lower probabilities of involvement for workers displaced in the years approaching retirement. We also find that post-displacement socioeconomic and psychological decline explain very little of the negative effect of job displacement on social participation, and that a single displacement event, rather than a series of multiple displacement events, is most strongly associated with lower probabilities of social involvement