Future of Work

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What will the future of work look like?

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How do societies define what counts as “skilled” and “unskilled” work, prestigious or stigmatized jobs, and paid or unpaid labour? How do shifting dynamics of inequality shape patterns of employment? What role do labour movements play in pushing for workplace health, safety, and democracy in a globalized context? Sociologists explore these and other issues in research on work and labour.

Research by Sociologists

Gray, G. C. (2009). The responsibilization strategy of health and safety: Neo-liberalism and the reconfiguration of individual responsibility for risk. The British Journal of Criminology, 49(3), 326-342.

Gray, G. (2019). A bird’s eye view of driving safety culture: Truck drivers’ perceptions of unsafe driving behaviors near their trucks. Work, 64(2), 187-194.

Weiler, A. M. (2021) Seeing the workers for the trees: Exalted and devalued manual labour in the Pacific Northwest craft cider industry. Agriculture and Human Values.

Weiler, A.M., K. Sexsmith, and L.-A. Minkoff-Zern. (2021). Parallel precarity: A comparison of U.S. and Canadian agricultural guest worker programs. International Journal of Sociology of Agriculture and Food 26(2): 143–163.

Zhou, M. (2019). Gender differences in the provision of job-search help. Gender & Society, 33(5), 746-771.

Zhou, M., & Hu, T. (2019). Jobs found through social contacts: Puzzling coexistence of higher job satisfaction and higher quitting intentions. The Sociological Quarterly, 60(1), 116-137.

News on the Future of Work

Coronavirus: How the world of work may change forever
Preparing for the Future of Work in Canada (OECD Report)

Sociology Courses at UVic

If you would like to explore the future of work and occupations in more depth, the Department offers a number of courses you might be interested in:

SOCI100A – Introduction to Sociology: Understanding Social Life
SOCI100B – Introduction to Sociology: Understanding Contemporary Society
SOCI204 – Self, Identity and Society
SOCI215 – Class and Social Inequality
SOCI220 – Media and Contemporary Society
SOCI305B – Families and Social Change
SOCI316 – Social Movements
SOCI318 – Social Change
SOCI321 – Work, Globalization and Labour Movements
SOCI326 – Social Networks
SOCI355 – The Corporation, Capitalism, and Globalization
SOCI438 – Issues in Contemporary Sociology