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Work

ESRC SEMINAR ON GLOBAL LABOUR REGUALTION

ESRC Seminar Series ‘Beyond Labour Regulation’
Constructing Research Agendas

Monday January 16th 2012, The Boardroom, College Building, Middlesex University, Hendon, London NW4 4BT, 10am to 5 pm

This ESRC Seminar Series hosted by Middlesex University has brought together academics and practitioners to examine changing global regulation of labour standards. The seminars were organised by a team at Middlesex University including Professor Martin Upchurch, Professor Richard Croucher, Elizabeth Cotton and Professor Joshua Castellino. Professor Miguel Martinez Lucio Manchester University) and Dr. Conor Cradden (University of  Geneva) helped with organisation at the Liverpool and Geneva seminars respectively. Our first seminar took place at Middlesex University, London in January 2010 and examined the problems of Contract and Agency labour.

Participants included academics, practitioners from General Union Federations, and activists within global supply chains. The second seminar, on Migration and Labour Regulation, was held in the Liverpool in the International Slavery Museum in September 2010. Speakers included representatives of major institutions concerned with migration and migrant workers, migrant worker groups, and academics. Case studies were presented of problems facing migrant workers from across the world. The third seminar was on the problems of labour regulation caused by Private Equity, and was held in June 2011 at the Universityof Geneva. Our final seminar will be held at Middlesex University, London on January 16th 2012, and will attempt to bring together previous seminar participants and others interested in collaborating with new research to explore further areas of ‘beyond labour regulation’.

Research Agendas Seminar: Monday January 16th, 2012
‘What We Should be Researching and Why’

Panel Discussion led by

Miguel Martinez Lucio (Professor of International HRM at Manchester University), and co-editor with Luis Enrique Alonso of Employment Relations in a Changing Society, Palgrave, 2006.

Kevin Doogan (Professor of European Policy Studies at the University of Bristol), and author of New Capitalism, The Transformation of Work?, Wiley, 2009

Julie Froud (Professor of Financial Innovation at Manchester University) and co-author of Financialization at Work, Routledge, 2008

Joshua Castellino (Professor of Law at Middlesex University) and co-author of Minority Rights in Asia, OUP, 2006

Sonia McKay (Professor of European Socio-Legal Studies at London Metroolitan University) and author of Refugees, recent migrants and employment: challenging barriers and exploring path ways, Routledge, 2008

Plus Practitioner Forum, with invited speakers from NGOs, trade unions, and policy organisations in the field of global labour regulation.
If you are interested in attending the seminar, please contact Professor Martin Upchurch (m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk) or the Seminar Series administrator Denise Arden (d.arden@mdx.ac.uk).

There is no registration fee, refreshments for the all day seminar will be provided, but please book places in advance: http://www.globalworkonline.net/blog/beyondlabour/

Martin Upchurch
Professor of International Employment Relations
Middlesex University Business School
The Burroughs
Hendon
London NW4 4BT
07545 487952
m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk<mailto:m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk>
Global Work and Employment Project (GWEp)
http://www.mdx.ac.uk/research/areas/HR/gwep/index.aspx

Globalisation and Work Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/#/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts
http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home%23/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts

**END**

 

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

 

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales)  

 

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a new song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

 

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Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

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Uncertainty

THE PRECARIAT: THE NEW DANGEROUS CLASS

Seminar and Book Launch

Date: Thursday 12th May, 2.30pm-4.30pm

Venue: CG41, College Building, Hendon Campus
(Ten Minutes from Hendon Central Tube on Northern Line)
http://www.mdx.ac.uk/aboutus/Location/hendon/index.aspx

“The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class”
By Professor Guy Standing
The Precariat is a new class, comprising the growing number of people facing lives of insecurity, doing work without a past or future. Their lack of belonging and identity means inadequate access to social and economic rights. Why is this new class growing, what political dangers does it represent and how might these be addressed?

Speaker:
Professor Guy Standing
Professor of Economic Security
University of Bath, UK
Website: http://www.guystanding.com/
Co-President, Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN)
Website: http://www.basicincome.org/

Biography: Guy Standing is Professor of Economic Security at the University of Bath. He was formerly Director of the Socio-Economic Security Programme of the International Labour Organization. He is co-president of the Basic Income Earth Network. His recent books include ‘Work after Globalization: Building Occupational Citizenship’ (2009) and ‘Beyond the New Paternalism: Basic Security as Equality’ (2002).

To register your interest and attendance, please contact Yangna Li at Y.Li@mdx.ac.uk by 5pm 4th May 2011
Martin Upchurch
Professor of International Employment Relations
Middlesex University Business School
The Burroughs
Hendon
London NW4 4BT
07545 487952
m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk
Global Work and Employment Project (GWEp): http://www.mdx.ac.uk/research/areas/HR/gwep/index.aspx

Globalisation and Work Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/#/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts
http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts<http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home%23/group.php?gid=238371095227&ref=ts

Beyond Labour Regulation Blog: http://www.globalworkonline.net/blog/beyondlabour/

—END—

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Money, money, money

PRIVATE EQUITY, CORPORATE TURBULENCE AND LABOUR REGULATION

Call for Papers
Private Equity, Corporate Turbulence and Labour Regulation

ESRC/Middlesex University One Day Workshop
Monday June 13th  2011, University of Geneva, Switzerland

Concerns over the role of private equity in shaping corporate behaviour were already apparent in the years immediately preceding the Great Financial Crash of 2008. In 2006 alone buy-outs of businesses by private equity organisations amounted to US$ 725bn. – equivalent to the economies of Argentina, Poland and South Africa combined. One quarter of all takeovers before the financial crash were financed by such private equity.

Major household names, such as Nabisco, Carrefour, Gate Gourmet and EMI have already fallen to such venture capital. Private equity finance depends on leverage, or the ability to borrow money to raise more finance. There is thus a dependence on debt, which enormously increases the risk of such investment. Up until the financial crash such risky ventures produced huge returns for the financiers, but after the crash such debt led to huge losses. Harvard University, for example, lost millions of dollars from its funds after it had mistakenly switched to private equity investment as an alternative to stocks and bonds. The result was lay-offs and redundancies of workers to cover the cost, a pattern of events being repeated elsewhere for workers whose employing organisation is dependent on debt finance.

Such ‘short-termism’ appears built in to the private equity model, as the financiers seek immediate gains from their investments at the cost of longer term corporate stability. Employees and their unions are faced with continuous episodes of restructuring as corporations are treated as ‘bundles of assets’ and plants are sold off to make profits or avoid losses. Productive investment in a company becomes less likely, as it is an additional cost to the remote owners. Workers suffer from increased job insecurity as off-shoring and contracting-out is encouraged, while industrial relations and collective bargaining becomes a casualty of corporate instability and ‘invisible’ employers.

This seminar will discuss and debate the continuing problems of private equity finance and corporate turbulence by bringing together academics and practitioners from trade unions, government bodies, employers and NGOs to discuss policy initiatives. The seminar is convened by Middlesex University, London and funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council. It is part of a series of seminars examining global labour regulation in the international economy. Previous seminars reviewed problems arising from the increasing use of contract and agency labour, and migrant workers.

Overview speakers include:

Professor John Grahl (Middlesex University) on Restructuring under the Rule of the Capital Markets: the case of private equity? and
Professor Geoff Wood (Sheffield University), Professor Marc Goergen (Cardiff University) and Professor Noel O’Sullivan (University of Sheffield) with a data presentation on The Employment Consequences of Private Equity Acquisitions: The Case of Institutional Buy-Outs.

Plus speakers from International Trade Union Federations on the trade union response.

If you wish to contribute a paper to this seminar, or wish to attend as a delegate please contact below. We are particularly keen to hear case study presentations on labour-related problems flowing from private equity and institutional buy-outs. Some financial assistance may be available for selected presenters to cover costs of travel and accommodation.

For more information, and registration at the Seminar, please contact Professor Martin Upchurch, Middlesex University, London, UK: m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk or Denise Arden d.arden@mdx.ac.uk

Further information on the seminar series can be found at Beyond Labour Regulation blog: http://www.globalworkonline.net/blog/private-equity-corporate-turbulence-and-labour-regulation/

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

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Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Global Economy

MIGRANT WORKERS’ RIGHTS IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY

ESRC Seminar

Thursday September 2nd 2010 International Slavery Museum, Liverpool, UK

This one-day seminar, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, is the second in the Middlesex University series examining emerging issues of global labour regulation. The seminar will be held at the International Slavery Museum (http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/ism/) in Liverpool’s dockside on Thursday September 2nd 2010 from 10am until 5.30pm.

Migration is an integral part of an increasingly internationalised economy. Around 3 per cent of the world’s population, just less than 200 million people, now live and work outside of their own country. This number has been growing at just less than 3 per cent in each year. The increased tendency for people to migrate to work and live has been spurred by changes in the world economy and the effects of structural economic change, or through war and civil upheaval, or environmental damage. Trade liberalisation and market de-regulation has also increased the propensity to migrate, as new geographical patterns of production have emerged. Yet labour migration is not a central concern of international agencies such as the WTO, the IMF or the World Bank. Migrant workers and their families are vulnerable to exploitation and racism, and labour market imbalances can result from migration in both sending and receiving countries.

The purpose of this seminar is to examine migration from a rights –based perspective. We hope to explore aspects of civil, human and social rights of migrant workers as well as labour and economic rights. Migrant labour is thus viewed from within perspectives of forced, slave and child labour as well as economic labour. As such the seminar welcome the participation of those academics, practitioners and migrant worker activists who wish to develop new agendas for regulating migrant labour through a variety of agency and policy initiatives.  

The seminar will be divided into two sessions. The first, thematic session, will examine alternative perspectives on migrant workers’ rights. The second session will present case studies from different world regions. Speakers/Participants will include: 

Marion Hellmann (Assistant General Secretary, Building and Wood Workers International, Geneva) – overview of migrant workers in the world economy

Professor Joshua Castellino (Law Department, Middlesex University) – A Rights Based Approach to Migration

Svetlana Boincean (International Union of Food, Farm and Hotel Workers ) -on eliminating Child Labour in agriculture and tobacco growing 

Heather Connolly and Professor Miguel Martinez Lucio (Manchester University)- Welfare Systems, Social Inclusion and Migrant Worker-Union Relations in the EU

Steve Craig (UCATT building workers’ union, UK) –  Vulnerable Work and Migration in the UK construction industry

Nick McGeehan (director of Mafiwasta www.mafiwasta.com , an organisation for migrant workers in the Gulf).

And case study representations from migrant worker activists in Ireland, the Gulf Region, Italy, and India.

If you are interested in participating in the seminar please register your interest with Denise Arden at d.arden@mdx.ac.uk. Lunch and refreshments are provided and the seminar is free to attend, but registration in advance is necessary. More information can be obtained from the seminar organisers, Professor Martin Upchurch (m.upchurch@mdx.ac.uk) and Professor Miguel Martinez Lucio (Miguel.MartinezLucio@mbs.ac.uk).

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon at MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon Profile: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/cold-hands-quarter-moon/

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Wavering on Ether: http://blog.myspace.com/glennrikowski

 

It's CrisisTime!

It's CrisisTime!

CRISIS WHAT CRISIS: FORWARD TO THE PAST?

 

 Critical Labour Studies: 6th Symposium 2009

Venue: The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London

Saturday 21st/Sunday 22nd November 2009

Statement of Intent
It is clear to researchers and activists, both in the trade union movement and universities, that global capitalism is increasingly shaping the worlds of work and employment. The imposition of this neo-liberal orthodoxy has many profound implications, not least that states seek to both de-legitimise workers’ opposition and marginalise their organisations. However, just as capitalism has embraced neo-liberal strategies, there has emerged a new politics of resistance that is varied and diverse, embracing: trade union and socialist organisations, green and ecological protest movements, anti-war activists, feminists, human rights campaigners and NGOs. It is against this background that the Critical Labour Studies (CLS) symposium has aimed to bring together researchers and activists to discuss key features of work and employment from a radical and labour-focused perspective. We recognise that while left academic researchers participate in the usual round of mainstream conferences, the scope for focused radical debate around these themes is actually quite limited. Through CLS we have developed an open working group and discussion forum that engages with many of the challenges facing researchers and trade unionists within the current environment of work and employment. By ‘labour’, we anticipate, in the traditions of radical researchers over the ages, a broad understanding of myriad social, economic and political agendas. To date, themes have included: race, identity and organising migrant workers, global unionism and organising internationally, the new politics of production, privatisation, outsourcing and offshoring. The list of themes and questions that concern us continues to develop over time, and the intention will be to reflect this evolving agenda at this year’s symposium. An ancillary objective is to engage in genuinely critical debate, rescuing this term from its co-option by mainstream agendas.

The Format of the Symposium
Building on the successes of the past five years, the forthcoming symposium will be structured as a series of plenary sessions. Each will be organised around a particular theme with speakers and discussants, followed by a broad discussion. It has been an important principle of CLS that the conference is not based on the convention of academic conferences with specific papers being presented in separate streams. Rather our intention has been to deepen discussion and debate, and to bring together researchers and labour/union movement activists (where possible) in joint sessions. All sessions are genuinely open and inclusive and involve a broad range of participants, from established academics to early-career researchers, and from established trade union officials to shop-floor representatives and grass-roots activists. The distinctive organising principles of CLS are, therefore, to assist unions and workers in dealing with the challenges faced in the neo-liberal world of work and employment. Ultimately, discussion of strategies and tactics are related to the broader aim of creating a socialist society.

*CLS PROGRAMME 2009*

VENUE: School of Oriental and African Studies
– Khalili Lecture Theater (KLT), University of London, Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London, WC1H 0XG

DATES: 21st and 22nd of November

Organisers: Demet Dinler, Jane Holgate and Miguel Martinez Lucio

Saturday 21st

8.30-9.30 Registration (with coffee and tea)

9.30 Welcome and introduction

First Session – Work Intensification and Lean Production

10.00 – 11.00

‘Is that Banana Active?’ Lean and Mean in the Civil Service
Speaker from PCS, Bob Carter (de Montfort University), Andy Danford (University of West of England), Debra Howcroft (University of Manchester), Helen Richardson (University of Salford), Andrew Smith (University of East of London), Phil Taylor (University of Strathclyde)

11.00-11.30 tea and coffee

11.30-12.30

Challenging lean production in the car industry. The politics of developing critical research agenda in and beyond the shop floor.
Steve Craig (UCATT), Ken Murphy (UNITE and Paul Stewart (Strathclyde University)

12.30-1.00

Prospects for a Critical Labour Psychology
Thomas Ryan (Northumbria University)

1.00-2.00 Lunch

Second Session – Labour Markets, Migration and Labour

2.00-2.45

The growth of living wage campaigns across university campuses

Clare Soloman – SOAS coordinator of the campaign; Jose Stalin Bermudez – shop steward; Demet Dinler – SOAS

2.45-3.30

Adapt or Decline – A Trade Union Future for Black Workers

Jane Holgate (Working Lives Institute) and Wilf Sullivan (TUC)

3.30- 4.00 tea and coffee

4.00-4.30

Racism, Nationalism and the Labour Movement in Northern Ireland: Racist bigots; they haven’t gone away you know

Independent Workers Union (IWU) address to CLS – Tommy McKearney IWU

4.30-5.30 Towards a Critical approach to Migration and Labour

Migration research: Why theory and methodology matters
Jutta Moehrke, Stoke-on-Trent Citizens Advice Bureau
Steve French, Centre for Industrial Relations, Keele University

Migration and the Politics of Research: Comparisons and Stereotypes
Heather Connolly and Miguel Martinez Lucio (University of Manchester)

Social 7pm onwards Rugby Tavern, 9 Great James St London, WC1N 3ES

Sunday 22nd

Third Session: Politics and Unions: Class and Organising

9.30 tea and coffee

10.00-11.00

Organising and Class
Mel Simms (Warwick) and Martin Smith GMB

11.00-12.00

Towards a Typology of Alternative Trade Union Futures in Western Europe
Martin Upchurch (Middlesex University), Andy Mathers (University of the West of England), Graham Taylor (University of the West of England)

12.-12.30

Time for a different model of public sector trade unionism
Roger Kline (UCU)
12.30-1.30 – Lunch

1.30 -2.30 – Open Discussion: CLS and Future Developments
_______

Join the Critical Labour Studies Email List

If you would like to be added to the CLS email list, please go to:
https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/webadmin?A0=CRITICAL-LABOUR-STUDIES

Check out our website: http://criticallabourstudies.org.uk/site/

Registration and Contact for the Conference

• The sessions will be held at the Khalili Lecture Theater (KLT) and registration is at the entrance of this lecture theatre in SOAS.
• The registration fee for the weekend is £60.00 (unwaged or low waged £40). This will include food, tea/coffee and Saturday evening’s entertainment.
• For further information contact Demet Dinler dd1@soas.ac.uk, Jane Holgatej.holgate@londonmet.ac.uk, or Miguel Martinez Lucio Miguel.MartinezLucio@manchester.ac.uk.
• TO REGISTER AND SEND YOUR CHEQUE CONTACT Jane Holgatej.holgate@londonmet.ac.uk – Dr Jane Holgate, Working Lives Research Institute, London Metropolitan University, 31 Jewry Street, London EC3N 2EY – Make cheques payable to the ‘LONDON ORGANISERS NETWORK’.
• It is recommended that you register and confirm attendance in advance of the conference due to the restrictions on numbers.

This event is supported by Historical Materialism, Capital and Class, and the BUIRA Marxist Study Group

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk