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Christopher Warhurst

Professor of Work and Employment, University of Warwick

As Director of IER, Chris Warhurst is motivated by wanting to see better scientific and policymaker understanding of work and employment. He is an Associate Research Fellow of SKOPE at the University of Oxford, a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts and a Trustee of the Tavistock Institute in London. He was previously Professor of Work and Organisational Studies at the Sydney University Business School and Founding Director of the Scottish Centre for Employment Research at Strathclyde University Business School. He is currently Chair of the Management Committee for the journal Human Relations, co-editor of Palgrave's Critical Perspectives on Work and Employment book series and an Editorial Advisory Board Member for Research in the Sociology of Work. Previously, he was co-editor of the journal Work, Employment and Society. His research expertise centres on job quality, skills and aesthetic labour.

He uses mixed methods in his research, which ranges over small-scale qualitative case studies to national surveys. He has secured more than 70 research awards from national research councils, government, employers, trade unions and charities etc.. He has published 16 books including The Skills That Matter (Palgrave), Are bad jobs inevitable? (Palgrave), Job Quality in Australia (Federation Press) and the Oxford Handbook of Skills and Training (Oxford University Press). He has published over 50 academic journal articles, over 60 book chapters and over 50 reports for government and practitioners.

He has been an expert advisor to the UK, Australian and Scottish Governments as well as the OECD, Oxfam Scotland and the Scottish Living Wage Campaign. He sat on the Measuring Job Quality Working Group co-chaired by the Carnegie Trust UK and the Royal Society of the Arts that was tasked with responding to the UK Government’s Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices recommendation to develop a measure of job quality for the UK.

Main research interests: job quality, skills, and labour market and labour process developments, trends and issues. Interested in supervising doctorate and masters research degrees in job quality, skills and aesthetic labour.


  • –present
    Professor of Work and Employment, University of Warwick