Inclusive Work & Employment

Inclusive Work and Employment

Domain Leader: Professor Alex Hughes

Against a backdrop of stubborn labour market inequalities, work intensification, labour union decline, and increased hardship for many workers and their families, this Domain explores geographical possibilities for more progressive labour market outcomes, collective organisation and creative solutions for their realisation in practice. With an inclusive focus on the lived experiences of workers within and beyond the Western capitalist ‘core’, the Domain brings together long-standing research interests in three primary areas:

  • the emergence of more and less socially inclusive forms of work and employment in ‘sharing’, ‘peer-to-peer’ and ‘digital’ economies
  • labour organisation and diverse geographies of worker (dis)empowerment in global service and commodity chains 
  • re-imagining more socially progressive possibilities for combining paid work with the everyday activities of social reproduction 

Our aim is to counter some of the current biases and blind spots within the ‘mainstream’ labour geographies agenda, including: a tendency to overlook worker agency – particularly when not articulated as collectively organised political strategies; and a narrow focus on the ‘core’ capitalist economies of the global North.

What is the scope for challenging long-standing labour market inequalities and exclusions through new forms of digital work and employment?
What are the possibilities for empowering workers at different locations in global service and commodity chains?
What is the scope for developing and mainstreaming family-friendly working?