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IER Newsletter - February 2021

IER Newsletter - February 2021
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Beyond 4.0 Conference - Call for papers

Beyond 4.0 will hold a scientific conference in Sofia, 30 September - 1 October 2021, focusing on digital transformations in work and employment. The event, entitled Inclusive Futures for Europe BEYOND Industrie4.0 and Digital Disruption is likely to be a 'hybrid conference'. Proposals for papers and posters can be submitted until 15 March 2021. For details please see the call for papers.

Webinar: Women’s work, class and COVID-19 in the UK

IER's Clare Lyonette and Tracey Warren (Nottingham University Business School) will discuss their work on women’s (un)paid work, class and COVID-19 in the UK in a webinar. The webinar is at 2 pm, Tuesday, 16 March 2021. Further information, including about registration can be found on Eventbrite.

Do ‘unsettled times’ such as those created by the Covid-19 pandemic create an opportunity for ‘gender undoing’ (as opposed to ‘gender doing’) (Risman) and for challenging and changing everyday work practices (Elson)? Or has the pandemic intensified existing gender and class-based disadvantages both at home and in the workplace, bringing with it the prospect of an attack on - or at best a stalling of - equality in work in the UK? In this paper, we explore the impact of COVID-19 on the paid and unpaid work of working class women, including comparisons with women and men in other class groupings.

This paper draws on new survey data on the impact of COVID-19 on women and men in the UK. In 2020, participants in the ‘UK Household Longitudinal Study’ were invited to take part in new monthly surveys and 17,450 participants filled in a first-wave questionnaire in April. Our study looks at employed women and men, and class variation in their experiences, over time. The project ‘Carrying the work burden of the Covid-19 pandemic: working class women in the UK’ is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, as part of UK Research and Innovation’s rapid response to COVID-19 (Project ES/V009400/1), and is in partnership with the Women’s Budget Group.
Image credit: Tim Dennell via a CC-BY-NC 2.0 licence.

A web-based approach to measuring skills mismatches and profiles in a developing country

Despite information failures in the labour market and their consequences on unemployment and informality rates, countries like Colombia lack a proper labour market information system to identify skill mismatches and employer skill requirements.
The use of online job portals as a potential source of labour market information has recently gained researchers’ and policymakers' attention. However, debates continue about the efficacy and robustness of job portals for labour market analysis. This new book by Jeisson Arley Cardenas Rubio contributes to our current understanding of the topic by developing a conceptual and methodological approach to identify skills, occupations, and skill mismatches using online job advertisements, which would otherwise be too complex to analyse.

Cárdenas Rubio, J. (2020) A web-based approach to measuring skills mismatches and profiles in a developing country: The Case of Colombia. Bogota: Del Rosario University.

Peter Dickinson appointed as advisor

Peter Dickinson, Senior Research Fellow at IER, has been appointed to the Evaluation Panel of the What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth. The panel provides advice and support to central and local government on the design and implementation of evaluations of local economic policies.
In providing this advice and support it helps ensure evaluations are high quality and supports policymakers to develop their evaluation skills, knowledge and capacity. Over the longer term, it will also expand the evidence about ‘what works’.
Peter has also been appointed to the International Labour Organisation's (ILO) roster of consultants providing advice, expertise and support on skills policy and practice.

COVID-19 Blog series: Caste differences in the acquisition of soft skills among disadvantaged young people in India

‘Soft’ skills are important labour market skills and include social aptitudes, language and communication capability, friendliness and ability to work in a team.
Using survey data collected at two time points from a large sample of disadvantaged young people enrolled in a skills training programme in India, this blog by Clare Lyonette, Sudipa Sarkar and colleagues examine whether caste affects initial levels of soft skills, and whether or not these skills can be learned during a relatively short period, providing young people with longer-term opportunities within the labour market.
Image credit: Cedefop.

Other publications

Barnes, S-A., Bimrose, J., Cárdenas-Rubio, J., Wilson, R., Owen, D., Hogarth, T., Bosworth, L., Day, R., Attwell, G. and Rustemeier, P. (2021) Enhancing a labour market information database: LMI for All. Stakeholder Engagement and Usage, Data and Technical Developments (2019-2020). Research report. London, Department for Education.

Elias, P. (2021) Promoting public engagement with longitudinal research: A report to the Economic and Social Research Council. London, ESRC.

Hogarth, T. (2021) Early evidence and implications for migration policy. Brussels, Migration Policy Institute Europe.

New projects

UK Prosperity Fund - Skills for Prosperity Programme Kenya, UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

Find more information on IER's current projects.
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