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Dr Christopher Warhurst

Research interests

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

Academic profile

As Director of IER, Chris Warhurst is motivated by wanting to see better scientific and policy-maker 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 Editorial 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 nearly 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 nearly 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 currently sits on a working group co-chaired by the Carnegie Trust UK and the Royal Society of the Arts and tasked with responding to the UK Government’s Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices.

Current projects

  • BEYOND 4.0 - Inclusive Futures for Europe BEYOND the impacts of Industrie 4.0 and Digital Disruption.

    With Sally-Anne Barnes, Sally Wright and Sudipa Sarkar with Chris Mathieu (Lund University), led by Steven Dhondt (TNO). Project Start Date: 01/01/2019 - Project End Date: 30/12/2022 [details]

  • Digitisation of work processes. With Wil Hunt and Sally Wright. Funded by European Commission. Project Start Date 13/08/2018 - Project End Date: 12/10/2018 [details]
  • Provision for ERM Restructuring factsheets. Funded by European Foundation. Project Start Date: 23/04/2014 - 28/02/2018

All projects

Selected publications

  • Wright, S., Warhurst, C., Lyonette, C. and Sarkar, S. (2018) Understanding and measuring job quality, CIPD Research Services Job Quality Study, Report 2. London: CIPD.

  • Warhurst, C., Wright, S. and Lyonette, C. (2017) Understanding and measuring job quality, CIPD Research Services Job Quality Study, Report 1. London: CIPD.

  • Knox, A. and Warhurst, C. (eds) (2015) Job quality in Australia: Perspectives, Problems and Proposals, Annandale, NSW: Federation Press.

  • James, S., Warhurst, C., Tholen, G. and Commander, J. (2013) What We Know and What We Need to Know About Graduate Skills’, Work, Employment and Society, 27:6, 952-963.
  • Warhurst, C., Carré, F., Findlay, P. and Tilly, C. (eds) (2012) Are bad jobs inevitable? Trends, determinants and responses to job quality in the twenty-first century, London: Palgrave.
  • Barr, J., Clarence, E., Froy, F. and Destefanis, S. and Warhurst, C. (2012) Local Job Creation: How Employment and Training Agencies Can Help - The Labour Agency of the Autonomous Province of Trento, Italy, LEED Working Papers 2012/17, Paris: OECD.Warhurst,
  • Warhurst, C., Buchanan, J, Finegold, D. and Mayhew, K. (eds) Oxford Handbook of Skills and Training, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017.

All publications

All conference presentations

Doctoral supervision

  • Sally Wright, Conceptualising and operationalising job quality in Australia (Due to complete 2017).
  • Lorraine Johnson, Does the nationally funded career support system meet the needs of late career professional women? (Due to complete 2017).
  • Dorothee Gnaedinger, Socio-economic factors influencing private pension provision in the Next Eleven Ecoomies (or N-11) (Due to complete, 2018).
  • Jiang (Sylvia) Yang, Employee training and its effectiveness in Chinese service enterprises (Due to complete 2019).


  • DTC Qualitative Methods - Qualitative interview data analysis (lecturer, University of Warwick, 2014 - to date).




Institute for Employment Research
University of Warwick
Coventry CV4 7AL

Tel: +44(0)24 76528170
Fax: +44(0)24 76 524241

C dot Warhurst at warwick dot ac dot uk