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Careers Guidance, Development and Transitions


The paths that individuals navigate through education, training and employment are becoming ever more complex. Learning at work increasingly complements more formal education and training as individuals continue to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding across the life-course as part of their evolving careers and broader personal development. Methods of supporting individuals making career, related choices and decisions are a major area of research activity at IER, for which it has developed an international reputation.


Our programme of work ranges from an internationally unique qualitative, longitudinal study into the nature of effective career guidance tracking the career trajectories of the recipients of career guidance, through the research and development of labour market information (LMI) for practice, to the investigation of ICT skills and competencies of practitioners.

The aim of our work is to integrate and contribute to knowledge on careers guidance practice and theory with the aim of fostering a dialogue amongst key stakeholders and contribute to policy discussions about the future shape of services and workforce capacity.

Research areas

  • Career guidance across the life course
  • Career practitioner skills and competences
  • Careers labour market information: LMI for All
  • Changing careers and identities
  • Labour market transitions
  • Lifelong guidance policy and practice
  • Public Employment Service programmes

Careers labour market information

Evaluation of the Founders4Schools careers programme for teachers; Founders4Schools (2019–2022).

    LMI for All; continuous funding since 2015 Department for Education.

    Labour market information and its use to inform the career guidance of young people; The Gatsby Charitable Foundation (2021).

    Strategic, Accessible Labour Market Intelligence; Skills Development Scotland (2021).

    Developing a careers LMI data tool; Department for Business Innovation and Skills, (2012-2015).

    Career guidance and lifelong guidance

    UK veterans from ethnic minority backgrounds, Office for Veterans' Affairs, (2022 - 2023)

    Improving skills and careers post Covid - ReWAGE subgroup; Gatsby Charitable Foundation; (2021 - 2022)

    Lifelong guidance policy and practice in the EU; European Commission (2018-2020).

    The role of parents in providing careers guidance and how they can be better supported; The Gatsby Foundation (2019-2020).

    Understanding the link between employers and schools and the role of the National Careers Service; Department for Business Innovation and Skills (2013-2014).

    Careers Education International Literature Review: Casual Impact Assessment; Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) (2016).

    Changing careers and identities

    Talent match evaluation and learning contract; Big Lottery Fund (2014-2015).