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Professor Noel Whiteside

Research interests

European labour market policies; Social security; Comparative systems of governance

Academic profile

Noel Whiteside is Professor of Comparative Public Policy. She is a contemporary historian of social and public policy development with specific interests in labour markets and constructions of social dependency in comparative (European) perspective. Current research projects include:

- Paths 2 Work - an interdisciplinary ESRC-funded study of transitions between education and employment in the midlands (UK), wth specific emphasis on the role played by internships, zero-hours contracts and other types of precarious work (PI Professor Kate Purcell)

- Superannuation Research Cluster (in collaboration with Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, funded by CSIRO, Australia): a project examining ways of improving efficiency and social justice in the world of funded pension systems (PI Professor Robert Lindley)

- Income Protection Gaps - a global study of widening gaps in household income consequent on premature death / permanent disability of wage earners (at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, University of Oxford)

Noel Whiteside has been a visiting Fellow at the University of Wisconsin (Madison), the Ecole Normale Superieur at Cachan (Paris), the universities of Sydney and Macquarie (Australia) and at Columbia University's Institute for Scholars at Reid Hall (Paris) in 2005-6. She was appointed Zurich Financial Services Fellow in 2000, Fellow of the Royal Historical Society the following year. She was a member of the Scientific Advisory Board for the Nordforsk programme on Nordic Excellence in Welfare Research (2008-12). She was awarded a Visiting Professorship at the University of Oxford in 2014.

Recent books include Pension Futures in the Twenty-first Century: Redrawing the Public-Private Divide (2003 & 2005), Britain's Pensions Crisis: history and policy (2006), and Transforming European Employment Policy: labour market transitions and the promotion of capability (2011).

Currrent projects

  • Precarious pathways to employment for young people? Unpaid, temporary and involuntary part-time work in transitions from education to employment. With Gaby Atfield, Peter Elias, Anne Green, Noel Whiteside, Phil Mizen (Aston University), Melanie Simms (University of Leicester), David Wilson (Open University). Funded by: ESRC, Project Start Date 01/01/2014 - Project End Date 30/09/2017 [details]

All projects

Selected publications

  • Whiteside, N. (2014) The Beveridge Report and Its Implementation: a Revolutionary Project?, Histoire@Politique. Politique, culture, société, n° 24, septembre-décembre 2014.
  • Whiteside, N. (2015) ‘Who were the ‘unemployed’? Conventions, classifications and social security law in Britain, 1911-34’, Historical Social Research / Historische Sozialforschung 40, 1, 150-170​.
  • Whiteside, N. (2014) Constructing unemployment: Britain and France in historical perspective’, Social Policy and Administration, 48, 1, 67-85.
  • Whiteside, N. (2014) ‘Privatisation and After: time, complexity and governance in the world of funded pensions’, Transfer 20, 1, 67-79​
  • Whiteside, N. (2013) 'Lebenschancen und Wohlfahrt: Forderung der Gleichstellung von Mannern und Frauen im forgeschritten Alter’ in. B. Huber (ed) Kurswechsel fur ein gutes Leben (campus, Frankfurt am Main 2013) 130-149.
  • Whiteside, N. (2015) ‘Organising labour markets: the British experience’ in S. Wadauer, T. Buchner, and A. Mejstrik The History of Labor Intermediation: Institutions and Individual Ways of Finding Employment in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries (Berghahn Books 2015) 74-91.
  • Whiteside, N.,Ebbinghaus, B., (2012) 'Shifting responsibilities in Western European pensions systems: what future for social models' Global Social Policy 12 (3), 266 - 282.
  • Whiteside, N., Mah, A., (2012) 'Human rights and ethical reasoning: capabilities, conventions and spheres of public action' Sociology 46 (5), 921 - 936.
  • Whiteside, N. (2012) 'The Liberal era and the growth of state welfare?' in Social Policy 4th Ed., 117 - 124, Editors: P. Alcock, M. May and S. Wright.

All publications

Doctoral supervision

  • Matthew Cooper
  • Sharon Chohan




Institute for Employment Research

University of Warwick
Coventry CV4 7AL

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

N dot Whiteside at warwick dot ac dot uk