Seasonal vs Disguised Unemployment: Difference and Comparison

Key Takeaways

  1. Seasonal unemployment is a type of unemployment that occurs as a result of fluctuations in demand for labour during different seasons of the year.
  2. Disguised unemployment is a concept associated with underemployment, particularly in the agriculture sector in developing countries.
  3. Seasonal unemployment depends on natural factors like weather conditions or crop cycles, which influence the availability of work. In contrast, disguised unemployment is less relevant to biological factors and more to structural issues within sectors, like over-employment in agriculture.

What is Seasonal Unemployment?

Seasonal unemployment is a type of unemployment that occurs as a result of fluctuations in demand for labour during different seasons of the year. It is prevalent in industries highly dependent on seasonal variations, such as agriculture and tourism.

One of the significant challenges of seasonal unemployment is its cyclical nature. Workers affected by seasonal unemployment may find themselves out of work during certain times of the year and have to seek alternative employment or rely on unemployment benefits until the next busy season arrives.

In agriculture, for example, there are distinct planting and harvesting seasons. Farmers require a large workforce to plant and harvest crops during these peak seasons.

What is Disguised Unemployment?

Disguised unemployment is a concept associated with underemployment, particularly in the agricultural sector in developing countries. It is not tied to specific seasons but affects a broader issue of surplus labour.

In disguised unemployment, more people are engaged in a particular activity or industry that is needed to accomplish the tasks. This situation arises when multiple family members work on a small agricultural plot, for instance, where the farm’s productivity remains the same with the addition of extra labour.

The term disguised implies that these individuals appear to be employed on the surface, but their work does not enhance overall productivity. This type of underemployment can be found in agriculture and various informal sectors in both developed and developing economies.

Difference Between Seasonal Unemployment and Disguised Unemployment

  1. Seasonal unemployment occurs when individuals are jobless during specific times of the year due to fluctuations in demand for particular industries, such as agriculture or tourism, while disguised unemployment refers to a situation where more workers are in a specific activity or sector than required, leading to unproductive labour.
  2. Seasonal unemployment results from specific industries’ cyclic and predictable nature, while disguised unemployment stems from overstaffing in traditional, labour-intensive sectors.
  3. Seasonal unemployment tends to be repetitive and follows a pattern year after year, while disguised unemployment may not show a clear pattern and can persist over extended periods.
  4. Examples of seasonal unemployment include farm workers who are employed during planting and harvesting seasons but are jobless during the rest of the year or lifeguards who work only during the summer while in disguised unemployment; this can be observed in scenarios where multiple family members are engaged in a small agricultural plot, highlighting unproductive labour.
  5. Seasonal unemployment depends on natural factors like weather conditions or crop cycles, which influence the availability of work. In contrast, disguised unemployment is less relevant to biological factors and more to structural issues within sectors, like over-employment in agriculture.

Comparison Between Seasonal and Disguised Unemployment

ParametersSeasonal UnemploymentDisguised Unemployment
NatureOccurs during specific times of the yearA situation where there are more workers than required
CauseCyclic and predictable nature of industriesOverstaffing in traditional, labour-intensive sectors
VariabilityRepetitive and follows a pattern year after yearNot show a clear pattern and can persist over extended periods
ExamplesFarm workersMultiple family members
dependencyWeather conditions or crop cyclesStructural issues within sectors, like over-employment in agriculture
/10

Education Quiz

Test your knowledge about topics related to education

1 / 10

Which of the following is NOT a 21st-century skill?

2 / 10

Which is the first country to have a public education system?

3 / 10

What is the study of government and political systems called?

4 / 10

In which year was the first college in the United States founded?

5 / 10

What is the study of history called?

6 / 10

First step in measurement is:

7 / 10

Who wrote the play "Hamlet"?

8 / 10

What is GPA used for?

9 / 10

Who is the author of the famous novel "Pride and Prejudice"?

10 / 10

What is the main purpose of a liberal arts education?

Your score is

0%

References
  1. https://www.jstor.org/stable/2552000
  2. https://www.jstor.org/stable/1810554

Last Updated : 22 January, 2024

dot 1
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!