The Employment Strategies of Russian Workers During the COVID-19 Pandemic




COVID-19 pandemic, working class, labor market, employment strategy, long-term employment, unstable employment


The article considers the employment strategies of Russian industrial workers. Basing on the materials of 75 in-depth interviews conducted in the Ulyanovsk region in the fall of 2020, the authors reveal the features of stable and precarious employment in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the situation on the local labor market has deteriorated significantly. Analyzing the negative consequences that workers faced during this period, the authors show that even those who continued to work during self-isolation experienced a decline in incomes. The study concludes that the «first wave» of the pandemic that hit the Ulyanovsk region in the summer of 2020 did not lead to a radical change in the employment strategies of workers but exacerbated the problems of labor inequality and expanded the range of practices of informal cooperation with employers.

Acknowledgements. The study was funded by RFBR, project № 20-04-60221 «Behavioural strategies of workers in the labor market in difficult epidemiological conditions».

Author Biographies

Julia V. Andreeva, Ulyanovsk State University

  • Ulyanovsk State University, Ulyanovsk, Russia
    • Сand. Sci. (Psi.), Associate Professor

Evgenya L. Lukyanova, Ulyanovsk State University

  • Ulyanovsk State University, Ulyanovsk, Russia
    • Senior Lecturer