I have a longstanding interest in gender, work and organization; in particular taking a poststructuralist approach to explore how women are positioned through organizational discourses and communication. This work was published in articles and led to two books, including Gender, Power and Organizations (2001, with Susan Halford) and Negotiating Gendered Identities at Work (2006, with Susan Halford).
I am also fascinated in how working lives and aspects of identity such as gender and race are transformed through processes of migration. I have conducted empirical research in both Hong Kong and South Africa, looking at how whiteness in particular provides an important resource in the making of new lives and identities in postcolonial contexts. This work has been published in articles and books including Expatriate Identities in Postcolonial Organizations: Working Whiteness (2010) and, most recently, Migration, Space and Transnational Identities: The British in South Africa (2014, with Daniel Conway). I have also explored the impact of EU Accession State migration on Southampton (with Derek McGhee, 2008).
My interest in the changing nature of working lives has also been pursued through research which has explored how changing working space can impact on senses of identity and well-being. Research funded by the British Council of Offices led to the report Making the Workplace Work and an article which won a BSA Climate Change Prize in 2014.
I have also conducted research on the third sector, as part of the ESRC’s Third Sector Research Centre, in a project entitled Third Sector Organizations: working lives and careers (with Susan Halford and Katie Bruce). More recently, I have turned to explore how age intersects with work and careers through two exciting new projects: one looking at the experiences of older apprentices in England (with Alison Fuller, Lorna Unwin and Gayna Davey) and one, conducted with colleagues at the ESRC’s LLAKES Research Centre, Institute of Education, University College, London, looking at young people’s entry routes into different regional labour markets in times of austerity.
In 2008 I joined with colleagues Professor Susan Halford (Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology), Professor Catherine Pope (Health Sciences) and Professor Alison Fuller (Education) in establishing the cross-disciplinary Work Future Research Centre. This forms a hub to bring together the University's research and expertise on the changing nature of work and organization in the 21st century. Since this time we have organized many high-profile events and worked on projects for the ESRC, Nuffield, the Norwegian Research Council, recently conducting a scoping review on The New Dynamics of Work to inform ESRC strategy in this important area of research, and a major Policy Commission Gender Equality at Work: how far have we come & how far do we have to go? for the University's own Public Policy@Southampton initiative http://publicpolicy.southampton.ac.uk/.
Primary research group: Work Futures Research Centre
Does Apprenticeship Work for Adults? The experiences of adult apprentices in England.
Professor Pauline Leonard
Sociology, Social Policy, Criminology University of Southampton Southampton SO17 1BJ United Kingdom
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