Gabriella Alberti

Associate Professor in Work and Employment Relations

+44(0)113 343 0204
Academic, Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change (CERIC), Work and Employment Relations
1.04, 31 Lyddon Terrace
Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change (CERIC):
Curriculum Vitae:
Gabriella Alberti CV
Equality Diversity and Inclusion, Labour Migration, Precarious Work, Temporary Agencies and Transnational Intersectionality, Trade Union Renewal, Free movement in the European Union, Brexit


2011: PhD in Social Sciences, Cardiff University
‘Transient Working Lives: Migrant Women’s Everyday Politics in London’s Hospitality Industry’

2007: MSc Social Sciences Research Methods, Cardiff University
Dissertation ‘Exploring the relation between migration management and EU strategies for employment. An ethnographic study of the policy process at the European Parliament’ (distinction)

2006: BA Political Sciences, First Class, Department of Politics, Institutions and History, University of Bologna, Italy


2012- to date: Lecturer in Work and Employment Relations, Leeds University Business School

2011-2012: ESRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, School of Business and Management, Queen Mary University of London

May-December 2010: research contractor ‘Labor Unions and The Civic Integration of Immigrant Workers:  UK Case Study on Hotel and Catering Workers’, appointed by Cornell ILR School/International and Comparative Labor, Ithaca, NY

April-November 2007: Intern, European Parliament, Brussels. Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs

September–December 2005: External Research Collaborator, ‘Special Action Program to combat Forced Labour’, International Labour Office, Geneva


I joined CERIC and the Work and Employment Relations Division in May 2012 after completion of an ESRC Post-doctoral Fellowship at Queen Mary University of London. The Fellowship aimed at disseminating the findings of my doctoral research on ‘Transient Working Lives: Migrant Women’s Everyday Politics in London’s Hospitality Industry’, which I completed at Cardiff School of Social Sciences in 2011. My approach to the study of employment, labour migration and diversity is highly interdisciplinary drawing from Industrial Relations, sociology, geography and organisation studies. My research interests revolve around the questions of transnational labour mobility, precarious work and their implications for changing employment relations, trade unions’ renewal and community unionism. In Cardiff I actively contributed to the activities of the ‘Centre for Global Labour Research’ between the Social Sciences and Business departments. Through sustained engagement with the Centre for Ethics and Politics and the Centre for Equality and Diversity at Queen Mary School of Business and Management, I developed an unconventional perspective to management studies, with particular attention on racial and gender equality at work, training and improved conditions for marginalised and contingent workers.

One of the key motivations of my academic work is to sustain a productive cross-pollination between research, policies and practices on the ground, in order to promote effective changes and organisational renewal in employment relations. Since 2010 I participated in a cross-country research project on ‘Labour Unions and the Integration of Immigrant Workers’ funded by Hans-Böckler-Stiftung, Carnegie Corporation and the Public Welfare Foundation, collaborating with scholars including Jane Holgate, Lowell Turner, Lee Adler and Janice Fine as well as with members of major labour unions across the Atlantic. 

I am also a member of the Leeds Migration Research Network which is an interdisciplinary research network of academics and practitioners in the area of migration research based out of University of Leeds. 

Funded Research

October 2017: Evaluation of the Migrant Access Project Plus’, a Joint proposal with the  Centre for Health Promotion Research School of Health and Community Studies Leeds Beckett University), Leeds City Council (with Chris Forde) £25,000 

February 2017-May 2017: ESRC Brexit / Industrial Strategy Challenge fund on ‘Migration, equality and social cohesion: promoting inter-community dialogue in times of change: focus on Brexit’, Gabriella Alberti  and Chris Forde £ 5,600 External partner: Migrant Access Project, Leeds

December 2016: ’Social protection for workers in the collaborative economy’ CERIC (PI Chris Forde and Mark Stuart) as part of the European Parliament Tender for a multiple framework service agreement with the Employment and Social Affairs Committee

November 2016-January 2018 ’Migration, equality and social cohesion: promoting inter-community dialogue in times of change’. Leeds Social Sciences Institute, Responsive Mode Fund (Total amount of IAA funding requested £8,500, total value of the project £ 10,000) with Chris Forde (WERD) and Louise Waite (Geography) External partner: Leeds City Council

September 2015-ongoing ’Migration, Development and Global Transformations’ (MDGT)  World University Network research development fund (RDF) (with Chris Forde)  £11,000 (as part of larger WUN RDF, PI Ann Singleton, Bristol University)

June 2016-ongoing: Mobility grant for leaners and staff ‘Erasmus Plus programme’ between the University of Leeds LUBS and the University of Padua Sociology department FISSPA. (PGRs Matt Cole (UoL) and Francesco Iannuzzi (UoP) working on the political economy of the hospitality sector and migrant labour in Italy and the UK.

February-June 2016 Exploring migrant and inter-mediated employment in the service economy of Italy LUBS Seedcorn Funding £2,000

May 2016-ongoing Europe, migration and the new politics of (in)security White Rose Research Collaboration Fund (PI Alexandra Hall, University of York in collaboration with University of Leeds and Sheffield)(£10960). With Deirdre Conlon and Louise Waite School of Geography University of Leeds)

Early Career Researchers Forum Event Developing future agendas in welfare to work research
Friday 27th January 2017 University of Leeds, BSA and LUBS seedcorn match funding (£1,000plus LUBS seedcorn) with PI Jo Ingold (WERD) and Ruth Patrick 9Liverpool University)

September 2014-April 2015:  ‘EU Social and Labour Rights and EU Internal Market Law’ (PI Professor Dagmar Schiek, Queen University Belfast) See (Total grant. €114,555)
May 2013: European Parliament Tender for a multiple framework service agreement with the Employment and Social Affairs Committee (EMPL) (PI Andrea Wigfield, Sociology and Social Policy, Leeds University)

September 2010-September 2012: ‘Labour Unions and the Integration of Immigrant Workers’ research project. PI Lowell Turner, ILR/Cornell, funded by Hans-Böckler-Stiftung, Carnegie Corporation and the Public Welfare Foundation.

May 2011- May 2012: ESRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship, ‘Transnational mobility, temporariness and political engagement: the everyday experiences of migrant women in the hospitality industry in London’, £ 60,566.20, School of Business and Management, Queen Mary University of London

Research Supervision:

My activity in the Centre for Employment Relations Innovation and Change at LUBS involves collaborative research on migration and labour mobility in a transnational perspective, trade unions and precarious migrant employment. With Professor Robert MacKenzie, Professor Chris Forde and Dr Zynovijus Ciupijus  we are currently interested in supervising doctoral projects related to:

•    The management of migration: labour and migration policy regimes
•    Transnational mobility and temporary staffing agencies
•    Work experiences and regulation of migrant employment
•    The impact of migrant labour on HRM strategies

Other areas of interest for supervising PhD students involve:

•    Temporary work, mobility and the crisis of worker representation
•    Comparative research on migrant workers’ integration in trade unions (with Prof Jane Holgate, LUBS)
•    Community organizing, trade union renewal and social movement unionism
•    Workforce diversity, equality, intersectionality
•    Migrant women’s empowerment and innovative trade union learning
•    The hospitality industry and low-paid service sector employment
•    Affective and embodied labour processes in the hotel industry

If you would like to contact me about a proposal or application, please do so via email: 

Doctoral student supervision:

Francesco Iannuzzi: Migrant Labour in the Hospitality sector in Venice (as part of the Erasmums Plus PGR exchange programme (Co-supervisor with Devi Sacchetto, University of Padova) (completed)

Meenakshi Sarkar: British Pakistani taxi drivers: An insight on class, culture and employment habitus (Co-Supervisor with Jane Holgate)

Calum Carson: Citizens UK campaign for the Living Wage in Britain since it's establishment in 2001 With (Co-Supervisor with Kate Hardy)

John Harwood: Chinese Migrant Workers in Japan labour market and societal changes (funded by WRoCAH) (Co-supervised with Professor H. Zhang, Asian Studies)

Lilith Brouwers: Abusive relationship or business partnership? Sex workers’ experience of third parties in the UK, ESRC Fellowship (Co-Supervisor with Kate Hardy)

Forella Longobardi: Restructuring and workers response in the White Good Industry: an international perspective University of Padua


  • LUBS5330M     Human Resource Management Core Course (MA in HRM/DV)
  • LUBS5339M - International Employment Policy and Labour Mobility (MA in HRM/DV)
  • LUBS3311 - Human Resource Management Dissertation (BA in HRM)
  • LUBS2000 - Management, Work and Organisations (BA HRM)
  • LUBS2060 - Contemporary Industrial Relations (BA HRM)

January 2015-present: Member of Editorial Board of the journal Work Employment and Society

September 2015-present: Member and co-founder of the Leeds Migration Research Network, University of Leeds

January 2014-present: Member of the Social and Environmental Justice Action Network, Leeds University

June 2012-present: Member of the British Sociological Association

May 2012- present: Member of the Centre for Employment, Innovation and Change, Leeds University Business School

2011-present: member of the academic European network Immigration, Immigrants and Trade Unions in Europe (IITUE)

October 2016-ongoing: External examiner Doctoral Exam board of the University of Padua, Department of Sociology (FISSPA)



Forde, C., Stuart, M., Joyce, S., Alberti,G., Hardy, K., Oliver Liz, Trappmann, V. Umney, C., Valizade, D., Carson, C.(forthcoming, expected publication November 2017) The Social Protection of Workers in the Platform Economy Policy Department A: economic and scientific Policy. Document requested by the European Parliament's Committee on Employment Affairs (EMPL).

Schiek, D., Oliver, L., Forde, C., Alberti, G. (2015) EU Social and Labour Rights and EU Internal Market Law. Directorate General for Internal Policies. Policy Department A: economic and scientific Policy. Document requested by the European Parliament's Committee on Employment Affairs (EMPL


International refereed journals

Alberti, G. and M. Tapia (2018) Unpacking the category of migrant workers in trade union research: A multilevel approach to migrant intersectionalities, Work Employment and Society

Alberti, G. and D. Però (2018) Migrating industrial relations: migrant workers’ initiative within and outside trade unions, British Journal of Industrial Relations 2018, doi:10.1111/bjir.12308

Alberti, G., and Danaj S. (2017): Posting and Agency Work in British Construction and Hospitality: the Role of Regulation in Differentiating the Experiences of Migrants, International Journal of Human Resources Management 28(21), 3065-3088.

Alberti, G., Sacchetto,  D.,Vianello F.A. (2017) Spazio e tempo nei processi produttivi e riproduttivi, Introduction, Special Issue, Sociologia del Lavoro N.146/2017

Alberti, G. (2017) The Government of Migration through Workfare in the UK Towards a shrinking Space of Mobility and Social Rights? Special Issue on Embattled movement to and through Europe Movements Journal Jg. 3, Heft 1/2017

Alberti, G. (2017) A new status for migrant workers: restrictions of the free movement of labour in the EU, Mondi Migranti, (3) pp. 33-49 Special Issue Labour intra-EU migrations: mobility models, practices and trajectories of EU citizens DOI: 10.3280/MM2016-003003

Alberti, G. (2016) ‘Mobilizing and Bargaining at the edge of informality: The 3 Cosas Campagin by outsourced migrant workers at the University of London’ WorkingUSA: The Journal of Labor and Society · 1089-7011 · Volume 19 · March 2016 · pp. 81–103

Forde, C., MacKenzie, R. and  Ciupijus, Z. and Alberti, G. (2015) ‘Understanding the Connections between Temporary Employment Agencies and Migration’ International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations. Temporary Employment Agencies and Migration Special Issue, Volume 31, December 2015, Issue 4

Alberti, G. (2014) ‘Mobility strategies, ‘mobility differentials’ and ‘transnational  exit’: the experiences of precarious migrants in  London’s hospitality jobs’, Work Employment and Society, 2014, Vol. 28(6) 865–881 1-17, DOI: 10.1177/0950017014528403

Alberti, G., J. Holgate, M. Tapia (2013), ‘Organising migrants as workers or as migrant workers? Intersectionality, trade unions and precarious work’, International Journal of Human Resources Management Volume 24, Issue 22, pages 4132-4148 DOI: 10.1080/09585192.2013.845429 

Alberti, G. (2014) ‘Moving beyond the dichotomy of Workplace and Community Unionism: the Challenges of Organising Migrant Workers in London’s Hotels’, Economic and Industrial Democracy, DOI: 10.1177/0143831X14534907

Alberti G. (2010) ‘Across the Borders of Lesvos: the gendering of migrants’ detention in the Aegean’, Feminist Review, Vol 94:  138-147. doi:10.1057/fr.2009.44 . Available here 


Journal articles in progress

Alberti, G. and Sanguinetti, A. Transnational welfare strategies of EU migrants amidst welfare reform and Brexit, Journal of European Social Policy

Alberti, G, and Iannuzzi, F. (in progress) Migrant Hotel Workers in Italy and the UK: a comparative study of management strategies and workers experiences in a globalising industry (Human Relations)


Book chapters

Tapia, M. and Alberti, G. (2019). Social Movement Unionism: A Toolkit of Tactics or a Strategic Orientation? A Critical Assessment in the Field of Migrant Workers Campaigns. In Grote, J.R. and C. Wagemann (eds) Social Movements and Organized Labour: Passions and Interests, pp.109-127. London: Routledge

Alberti G. (2017) Il sindacalismo ibrido dei migranti. In Sacchetto D. and Chignola S.Globalizzazione e crisi: lavoro migrazioni valore. Bologna: Derive e Approdi

Alberti, G.  (forthcoming) Expansion of the labour market and migration. In G. Gall (Ed) Handbook on the Politics of Labour, Work and Employment. Edward Elgar

Alberti, G. (2014) Multi-scalar organizing strategies and the question of migrant workers’ participation in trade unions: the hotel industry in London. In: David Jordhus-Lier, and Anders Underthun (eds.) A hospitable world? Tourism and the organisation of work in hotel workplaces.  Routledge

Alberti, G. L., Holgate and J., Turner (2014). Opportunity and choice for unions organizing immigrant workers:  a comparison across countries and industries In: L. Turner, M. Tapia, and L. Adler (eds) Mobilizing against Inequality: Unions, Immigrant Workers, and the Crisis of Capitalism. Ithaca, New York: ILR-Cornell University Press


Online publications

Alberti, May 2018 The Bigger Strike ever (in the history of HE), Precarious Connections

Cutter, J., Ciupijus, Z. and Alberti G. (forthcoming) Brexit, labour migration & worker rights:  What's the story so far?  Centre for Employment Relations Innovation and Change, University of Leeds 

Alberti, G., Oliver, L., Greenwood, I. and C. Forde (2016) The business of the June Referendum and labour citizenship in the EU: what’s good for workers? Centre for Employment Relations Innovation and Change. June 15th 2016. Available at:

Alberti, G. (2015) The Government of Mobility 2: The (United) Kingdom of workfare versus welfare for migrants Part I. Precarious (Dis)Connections. Available at:

Alberti, G. (2015) The Government of Mobility 3. The defeat of the Europe of Rights and conditioned freedom of movement Part II. Precarious (Dis)Connections. Available at:

Alberti, G. (2014) ‘3Cosas campaign shows migrant workers how to get organised’, The Conversation, Available at


Special Issues 

Co-edited with Kate Hardy, Charles Umney, Vera Trappmann and Ioulia Bessa. Work, employment and society Special issue 'In, Against and Beyond Precarity: The Struggles of Insecure Workers' (expected publication June 2018

Co-edited with D. Sacchetto and F. A. Vianello: 'Space and Time in Productive and reproductive processes', Sociologia del lavoro 146/2017 DOI: 10.3280/SL2017-146010


Organised events, conferences and panels

7-9 June 2018: ‘New patterns of intra-EU migration? Ethnographic insights on labour and welfare experiences of migrant workers, Panel organised with D. Coletto and G. Fullin, Ethnography and Qualitative Research Conference, Bergamo 

July 2017: Migrants voices of Leeds: A day of information, engagement and action, Cockburn Centre, Leeds, 7th July 2017. With the Leeds City Council, Migrant Access Project, Leeds

September 2016: ‘Work Employment and Society Conference: ‘Work in Crisis’ University of Leeds, Centre for Employment Innovation and Change, Leeds

March 2015: Migration Roundtable Event, Centre for Employment Innovation and Change-Leeds University Business School, Department of Human Geography and Care Connect. Participants from Leeds City Council, Migration Yorkshire, Migrant Rights Network, RITAS, Unite, Leeds Citizens Advice Bureau. Leeds Civic Hall, Leeds, 6ht of March 2015.

June 2013: ‘Migrants and Employment Intermediaries in the European Union’, 20th International Conference of Europeanists: Crisis and Contingency: States of (In)stability, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, June 25-27, 2013 (with Dr Sébastien Chauvin, University of Amsterdam) 

June 2013: ‘Comparative Research on Trade Unions and Migrant Workers’, Symposium, the 20th International Conference of Europeanists: Crisis and Contingency: States of (In)stability, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, June 25-27, 2013 (with Dr Maite Tapia and Stefania Marino)

Key notes and invited talks

12 June 2018: Latin American Workers Organising in London, International seminar

ASEP Phd Program - Analysis of Social and Economic Processes Economic globalization, vulnerable workers and new forms of collective action, University of Milan Biccocca

14 June 2018: Key note, International promo Conference: Enhancing economic democracy for posted workers. University of Padua, EU Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI) 

Protecting Mobility through Improving Labour Rights Enforcement in Europe (PROMO) 

16th of May 2018: invited to the University of Bristol, Seminar Series- School of Management: The Government of Migration through Workfare in the UK Towards a shrinking Space of Mobility and Social Rights?

31 May 2017: Discussant at the International workshop  The Labour of Hospitality: Migration, Production and Political Economy, University of Padua, Italy. Organised by Francesco Iannuzzi and Matt Cole (Erasmus Plus partnership agreement University of Leeds-Padua FISSPA)

25 November 2016: invited contributor: ESRC Seminar Series: Migrants, Workplace and Community: Learning from Innovation in Civil Society Migrant Worker Initiatives and Established Labour Organisations, ‘A pattern of restriction of social and mobility rights for EU migrants in the UK? Implications for labour relations’, University of Manchester 

11 October 2016: invited speaker “Portability and access to social rights”. Public hearing on Obstacles to EU citizens freedom to move and work in the Internal Market Committee on Petitions of the European Parliament (PETI) , European Parliament, Brussels

July 2016: invited speaker: Migration and Urbanization: expansion of research links between China and the UK. (PI Professor Zhang Asian studies and Social sciences, University of Leeds), Jinan University College of Economics Guangzhou, China

23 October 2015: invited expert speaker: ‘Testing EU citizenship as "labour citizenship": Round table on the cases of hospitality industry and warehouses., Co-funded by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union, University of Padua

12 October 2015: invited speaker, report to the European Parliament, Directorate General for Internal Policies. Policy Department: economic and scientific Policy. Report on the EP-funded study: EU Social and Labour Rights and EU Internal Market Law (with Professor Dagmar Schiek), European Parliament, Brussels.

7-11 September 2015: Plenary Speaker, session on “the Migration Phenomenon”, ILERA World Congress, ‘The difference that migration and employment make: a cross-sectoral analysis of access to employment security and social protection for migrants in the UK’, co-authored with Sonila Danaj. ILERA: Cape Town

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