Postgraduate Researcher

Email:
ipi5cic@leeds.ac.uk
Categories:
Postgraduate Researchers, Work and Employment Relations, Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change (CERIC)
Expertise/Research:
Living Wage; Wage inequality; social movements; Citizens UK; employment relations; in-work poverty
Profile

Scholarship

ESRC scholarship

Qualifications

Masters in Social Research (School of Sociology, University of Leeds)

BA in Political Studies (School of Politics and International Studies, University of Leeds)

Experience

I am currently undertaking doctoral research at Leeds University Business School, the focus of which is examining the business case for the Living Wage in Britain through a case study analysis of three accredited Living Wage Employers who have adopted the measure in recent years. The aim of this project is to make a substantial and in-depth contribution in furthering both academic knowledge of the implications of organisations adopting the Living Wage, and in providing employers considering implementing it with a more comprehensive guide to both the costs and benefits of implementation.

In 2016 I took a break from my project to take a position at the International Labour Organisation in Geneva, Switzerland, focusing on research surrounding non-standard forms of employment and the implications of the growth of precarious work within the burgeoning “gig economy”. 

Prior to my doctoral studies I completed a Masters in Social Research at the School of Sociology, University of Leeds (Distinction), supported by a HEFCE scholarship for promising young scholars from low-income backgrounds, taking a particular interest in the Living Wage and the demonization of social security claimants through both media discourse and public policy. More broadly I am interested in issues surrounding social and welfare policy, in particular the ongoing dismantling of the British welfare state, the growing inequality and gap between rich and poor in many western countries, and the impact of ongoing government austerity measures on the poorest and most vulnerable people in society.

I continue to hold the role of Editorial Manager for the academic journal Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy (ASAP), working with Professor John Stillwell of the School of Geography, University of Leeds, and am a trustee board member and vice-chair of a local charity that specialises in providing welfare and legal support for at-home workers. Outside of academia, I am also a keen photographer.

Professional Memberships

Institute of Directors

Research

Thesis title: "The campaign for and impact of the Living Wage in Britain: 2001 to present"

Supervisors: Kate Hardy, Stuart Hodkinson, Gabriella Alberti

Keywords

Living Wage; Wage inequality; social movements; Citizens UK; employment relations; in-work poverty

Thesis synopsis

Quick summary:

  • A case study research project exploring Living Wage employers' experiences of adopting and implementing the Living Wage for their organisations, and their interaction with the Citizens UK Living Wage campaign throughout this process;
  • A particular emphasis on the impact that being paid the Living Wage has on low-paid workers within these organisations

Aims and objectives of this research:

  • To highlight the impact that receiving the Living Wage has on low-paid workers;
  • To significantly contribute to the evidence base that demonstrates the positive benefits of public and private sector employers adopting the Living Wage for their employees;
  • To provide an insight into the inception and evolution of the Living Wage campaign as a response to rising rates of in-work poverty in Britain today

Socioeconomic issues being explored through this research:

  • The considerable rise and ongoing growth of in-work poverty in Britain today, and the Living Wage as a response to this phenomena;
  • The development of the Citizens UK/Living Wage Foundation campaign for the Living Wage (including its response to the new government "National Living Wage" and the alternative suggestion of a "Citizens Income" to alleviate in-work poverty rates);
  • The cost of living in Britain today;
  • Debates surrounding "Corporate Social Responsibility", and who in society has the responsibility and duty for ensuring that those in employment are not also in poverty;
Publications

"Tackling the Trade Union Bill", Unite, March 2016

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