Macquarie University
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Pathways for Graduates into the not-for-profit sector

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posted on 2022-03-28, 22:10 authored by Eleanor Quinlan
This thesis expands the boundaries of existing research on rising precarity in graduate labour markets. Sociological research disproportionally focuses on the experiences and employability of graduates, the supply-side of the graduate labour market. In this thesis I argue for the importance of a demand-side analysis focused on the decisions of hiring organisations. Looking at the largely unstudied graduate labour market of Australia's not-for-profit sector, I investigate how not-for-profit organisations structure entry-level work hence shaping graduate pathways into employment. I ask: How do organisations shape graduate pathways into the not-for-profit sector? To answer this question, I gathered organisational data for use within a mixed methods research design. I monitored a website that posts job advertisements for not-for-profit organisations,, and conducted semi-structured interviews with managers of recruitment at not-for-profit organisations. In contrast to much of the existing research, I also include both paid and unpaid forms of entry-level work in my analysis. Such an approach, which explores the relationship between entry-level work and organisational practice, deepens our understanding of contemporary labour markets and the difficulties encountered by young job seekers.


Table of Contents

Introduction -- Literature review -- Methodology -- Paid work -- Unpaid work -- Conclusion.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 61-74

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Sociology

Department, Centre or School

Department of Sociology

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Gabrielle Meagher


Copyright Eleanor Quinlan 2018 Copyright disclaimer:




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