Among the many legacies of 2008’s Global Financial Crisis was a need to re-evaluate employment relations, and a timely analysis comes in the form of the Oxford Handbook of Employment Relations, put together by a team led by Professor Adrian Wilkinson, Director of Griffith University’s Centre for Work, Organisation and Wellbeing.
“There has been a growing interest in the relationship between national institutional configuration and the practice of people management in different settings,” he says. “Most recently, work has been directed to the consequences of economic change and crisis, internal diversity in varieties of capitalism, and the nature of institutional coverage in developing economies.”
The Oxford Handbook of Employment Relations is published by Oxford University Press and is edited by Professor Wilkinson with Geoffrey Wood and Richard Deeg.
“Our hope is to produce a definitive book and one relevant to the present condition,” Professor Wilkinson, a fellow of the Australian Human Resource Institute, says.
Professor Wilkinson is a world authority in the field of human resources, and was among the top 20 global thinkers compiled by HR Most Influential in 2012. The United Kingdom Academy of Social Sciences bestowed upon Professor Wilkinson the award of Academician, a rare distinction for his outstanding contributions to social sciences research.
The Oxford Handbook of Employment Relations is unique in its approach to the questions of diversity, continuity, and change, and explores in depth their impacts on the practice of employment relations by discussing how firms and institutions are evolving in a broader context.
“One of the major shortfalls of the existing literature on comparative capitalism is its lack of attention to the developing world.
“Although research on human resource management in developing countries has been dominated by cross-cultural explanations, there is increasing work linking the practice of HRM to institutions, and to the ties linking firms across national boundaries, most notably the consequences of global commodity chains.
“A further issue has been the nature of employee wellbeing and changing terms and conditions of employment, and the increasing proportion of jobs that offer neither occupational nor career security.”
The Oxford Handbook of Employment Relations also seeks to address the lack of dialogue between traditionally distinct theoretical perspectives by looking at changes in the practice of employment relations since the 1970s drawing on experts from around the world including the universities of Cornell, Geneva, LSE, Cambridge, Warwick and Cape Town.
The work links the practice of employment relations to various business systems, and provides a comprehensive analysis linking theoretical accounts to the specific practices of employment relations offering a truly comparative treatment of the subject providing frameworks and empirical evidence for understanding trends in employment relations in different parts of the world.