Dr Hugh Cook
- Position: Associate Professor in Employment Relations and HRM
- Areas of expertise: Strategic HRM Implementation; HRM outcomes and job stress; Trade union partnership; Adult skills and training; Job satisfaction
- Email: H.S.T.Cook@leeds.ac.uk
- Phone: +44(0)113 343 4558
- Location: GM26 Maurice Keyworth Building
- Website: ORCID
Dr Hugh Cook researches work and employment, specifically the implementation of strategic HRM and training systems and their effect on employee related outcomes. He supervises PhD research and teaches at UG and PG level.
2012-2015: BA HRM Programme Director
2011-Present: Lecturer in Employment Relations and HRM
2009-2010: Research Fellow, Leeds
2007-2011: Part time Teaching Assistant & Associate Lecturer, Leeds
2007-2011: ESRC funded Doctoral Research Fellow, Leeds
My research focusses on the implementation of strategic HRM systems. My current work in a knowledge transfer partnership project explores the outcomes of emotional labour at work and strategies to mitigate it.
My prior and on-going research has explored the sustainability of high performance work systems during recession and retrenchment; and the interacting dynamics between trade union representation and organisational HRM systems. Further interests stem from a large scale survey project on collective bargaining practices, including pay distribution during recession, and union behaviours, priorities and interactions with HRM practice.
I am also interested in the contribution of trade unions to skills provision in the UK economy, in particular, partnerships with employers around the learning agenda and how this contributes more broadly to debates around union modernisation and renewal. This has research has stemmed from a key involvement on the largest programme of research projects on union-led learning undertaken to date. Finally, I have interests in understanding determinants of job satisfaction, resulting from collaboration on a large qualitative project of multiple occupational groups. Contributions are being developed on meaningful work, class and reflexivity in the labour market, and morale of junior doctors.
- Undergraduate Head of Year
- BA HRM Programme lead/ deputy lead
Published journal articles (ABS 3 and 4):
- Cook, H., MacKenzie, R. & Forde, C. (2017) Union partnership as a facilitator to HRM: Improving implementation through oppositional engagement. The International Journal of Human Resource Management. DOI: 10.1080/09585192.2017.1399431
- Cook, H., MacKenzie, R. & Forde, C. (2016) HRM and performance: the vulnerability of soft HRM practices during recession and retrenchment. Human Resource Management Journal. 26: 4, 557-571.
- Stuart, M., Cutter, J., Cook, H. & Winterton, J. (2013) Who stands to gain from union-led learning in the UK? Economic and Industrial Democracy. 34: 2, 227-246.
- MacKenzie, R., Forde, C., Robinson, A., Cook, H., Eriksson, B., Larsson, P. & Bergman, A. (2010) Contingent work in the UK and Sweden: Evidence from the construction industry. Industrial Relations Journal. 41: 6, 603-621.
Other published articles and reports:
- Bessa, I., Charlwood, A., Cook, H. and Jephson, N. (2016) CERIC Policy Report No. 8: An Enquiry into the Morale of Junior Doctors. Leeds: CERIC
- Valizade, D., MacKenzie, R., Cook, H and Forde, C. (2015). CERIC Policy Report No 7: Collective bargaining, pay and union-management relationships in unionised workplaces during the post-recession period. Leeds: CERIC.
- Stuart, M., Cutter, J., Cook, H., Valizade, D. and Garcia, R. (2016) Evaluation of the Union Learning Fund Rounds 16-17 and Support Role of Unionlearn. London: TUC.
- Stuart, M., Cutter, J., Cook, H., Mustchin, S. (2013) The sustainability of union learning and the ULF. London: TUC
- Stuart, M. & Cook, H. (2011) Sustaining union-led learning: findings from the UPO follow-on survey. London: Unionlearn
- Stuart, M., Cutter, J., Cook, H. & Winterton, J. (2010) Evaluation of the Union Learning Fund Rounds 8-11 and unionlearn: Final Report. London: TUC
- Stuart, M., Cook, H., Cutter, J. & Winterton, J. (2010) CERIC Policy Report No. 4. Assessing the impact of union learning and the Union Learning Fund: union and employer perspectives. Leeds: CERIC.
- Stuart, M., Cook, H., Cutter, J. & Winterton, J. (2010) Evaluation of the Union Learning Fund and unionlearn: Preliminary findings. London: Unionlearn
- Vincent, S. & Cook. H. (2008) Evaluating learning and assessment methods for teaching management research. A project report prepared under the auspices of the “Research into Teaching” Initiative.
Conference papers and presentations:
- Cook, H., Valizade, D., Forde, C. and MacKenzie, R. (2019) The effect of trade unions on high performance work systems: Does the industrial relations climate matter? Society for Advancement of Socio-Economics (SASE). New York, USA.
- Brooks, J., Cook, H. and Grugulis, I. (2019) Rethinking situated learning during austerity: Participation and communities of practice in the UK Fire and Rescue Service. International Labour Process Conference. Vienna, Austria
- Brooks, J., Grugulis, I. and Cook, H (2018) ‘Ethnographic accounts of communities of practice in firefighters. Liverpool Ethnographic Symposium. Copenhagen, Denmark.
- Brooks, J., Cook, H. and Grugulis, I. (2018) ‘Situated learning in the UK Fire and Rescue Service’ British Universities Industrial Relations Association. London, UK.
- Cook, H., Forde, C. and MacKenzie, R. (2017) ‘The vulnerability of commitment focused HRM’ 35th International Labour Process Conference (ILPC) Sheffield, UK.
- Charlwood, A., Cook, H. and Jephson, N. (2016). Re-thinking the determinant of job-satisfaction. CIPD Applied Research conference. London, UK.
- Cook, H., Valizade, D., MacKenzie, R. and Forde, C. (2016) Pay rises in unionised workplaces during and after the recession. Society for Advancement of Socio-Economics (SASE). Berkeley, San Francisco, USA.
- D. Valizade, R. MacKenzie, C. Ford, H. Cook (2016) ‘Trade union strategies for changing collective bargaining priorities in the UK’ 34th International Labour Process Conference (ILPC) Berlin, Germany.
- Mackenzie R., Forde C., Cook H., and Valizade, D. (2015). ‘The Effect of Trade Unions on High Performance Work Systems (HPWS): Does industrial Relations Climate Matter?’ 17th International Labour and Employment Relations Association World Congress (ILERA). Cape Town, South Africa.
- Cook H., Stuart M., Cutter, J. and Mustchin, S. (2014) Learning as a union strategy for resilience 32nd International Labour Process Conference, Kings College, London.
- Cook, H. (2013) The impact of recession on HRM and the intensity of work: capitalising on insecurity. Work, Employment and Society Conference 2013, Warwick, UK.
- Stuart, M., Cook, H., Cutter, J. & Winterton, J. (2011) Learning as a ‘core’ agenda issue for unions in Britain. Paper for the Industrial Relations in Europe Conference 2011, Barcelona, Spain.
- Stuart, M., Cook, H., Cutter, J. & Winterton, J. (2011) The impact of union-management learning agreements on HRD practice in Britain. Paper presented at the 12th International Human Resource Development Conference. Cheltenham, UK.
- Cook, H. (2011) HRM and performance: qualitative progress at the largest private sector employer in the UK. Paper presented at the 29th International Labour Process Conference. Leeds, UK.
- Stuart, M., Cutter, J., Cook, H. & Winterton, J. (2011) Who stands to gain from union-led learning in the UK? Paper presented at the 29th International Labour Process Conference. Leeds, UK.
- Cook, H. (2011) The retail sector: HRM, partnership and the recession. Paper presented at the ILPC CERIC doctoral conference.
- Stuart, M., Cook, H., Cutter, J. & Winterton, J. (2010) The state of union-led learning in Britain. Paper presented at the 28th International Labour Process Conference. Rutgers, New Jersey.
- Cook, H. (2009) Unpacking complexities of the ‘high performance human resource management and establishment performance’ debate using qualitative research in the retail sector. Paper for the 15th International Industrial Relations Association. Sydney, Australia.
- Cook, H. (2009) A qualitative study of HRM in the retail sector: beginning the fieldwork. Presented at the 2009 Centre for Employment Relations Innovation and Change annual doctoral conference.
- Cook, H. (2008) Reviewing the literature on HRM and organisational performance. Presented at the 2008 Centre for Employment Relations Innovation and Change annual doctoral conference.
- In Dundon, T.,
- In – Field, A. (2009) Discovering Statistics Using SPSS. Sage publications with Shift-Media. Produced multiple choice questions to accompany each chapter of this statistics textbook for the companion website.
Research funding generated as PI or Co I:
- 2019 – PI on a Knowledge Transfer Partnership with Prof Irena Grugulis to research emotional labour at Lowell Financial (£100,497)
- 2018 – Small Research Grant (LUBS) for research into emotional labour in the financial services sector (£2,000)
- 2015 – Evaluation of the Union Learning Fund rounds 15-16 and support role of unionlearn TUC Unionlearn, (£127,622), Co-Investigator with Prof Mark Stuart (PI) and Jo Cutter on collaboration with the University of Essex
- 2015 – Surveying collective bargaining priorities. Institute for Employment Rights (£3,000) Co-investigator with Prof Rob MacKenzie, Prof Chris Forde, Dr Danat Valizade.
- 2013 – Unionlearn: Sustainability of Union Learning and Employer Engagement Strategies. Co-investigator with Prof Mark Stuart (PI), Jo Cutter and Dr Stephen Mustchin. (£35,000)
- 2012 – Evaluation of unionlearn and the Union Learning Fund, Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), in collaboration with Institute for Employment Studies, (£110,000), with Prof Mark Stuart (PI) and Jo Cutter.
- 2011 – Unionlearn Union Project Officer follow-on survey on sustainability. Co-investigator with Prof Mark Stuart. £10,000
- ESRC +3 Doctoral Research Fellowship. Three years full time study fully expensed to research HRM and Performance in the UK retail sector. c£50k
In the media:
The Conversation (2016):
Five things junior doctors need to know before they hit the wards: https://theconversation.com/five-things-junior-doctors-need-to-know-before-they-hit-the-wards-63571
Employee benefits (2015):
The outcomes and complexities of flexible benefits schemes: https://www.employeebenefits.co.uk/issues/december-2015/dr-hugh-cook-the-outcomes-and-complexities-of-flexible-benefits-schemes/
External roles and Scholarly Activity:
External Examiner at The University of Birmingham (under-graduate Business and Management Degree Programmes) 2018-
Executive committee member of the British Universities Industrial Relations Association (BUIRA) 2016-
Peer reviewer for:
- Human Relations
- Human Resource Management Journal
- International Journal of Human Resource Management
- Economic and Industrial Democracy
- Employee Relations
- African Journal of Business Management
PhD Students and Post-Doctoral Researchers:
I currently mentor Dr James Brooks who is working on a 2 year post-doctoral research fellowship, having previously supervised his PhD with Prof Irena Grugulis.
I have supervised four doctoral student to completion, and am currently supervising a number of ongoing projects. These are:
Dr Joanne Cutter: Getting learning into the bargain: trade union strategies for bargaining over learning in the workplace (Completed 2015)
Dr James Brooks: Know and tell: Understanding knowledge transfer in the fire and rescue service (Completed September 2017)
Dr Edister Jamu: An institutional analysis of academic talent management in Malawian universities (Completed December 2017)
Dr Jiachen Shi: Employers' HRM response to external economic factors in China Completed (December 2018)
Lydia Suleh: Training systems in the Nigerian Oil and Banking sectors during recession
Simon Wool: Understanding the barriers and enablers encountered by disabled job seekers in the UK labour market.
- 2012: PhD, University of Leeds
- 2006: MA Human Resource Management, Distinction, University of Leeds
- 2004: BSc Psychology, 2:1, University of Liverpool
- Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Full academic member: MCIPD.
- British Universities Industrial Relations Association (BUIRA)
- Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics (SASE)
As Lecturer in Employment Relations and HRM 2011-
I am at the forefront of innovation in faculty undergraduate teaching strategy, and since 2011 have had the following responsibilities and achievements:
- Programme director for the BA HRM and BA Management with the Human Resource from 2012 to 2015.
- Mentor and deputy programme director to BA HRM and Management with HR programme director from 2015 to present.
- I built a new joint Management with HR degree, which has significantly increased UG recruitment to the division.
- Leading the WERD division’s UG courses through AACSB accreditation and aligning Assurance of Learning measures with course content and assessment.
- Leading the BA HRM re-application for CIPD re-accreditation, and accreditation of the new BA Management with HR.
I teach or have taught on a range of modules on undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in HRM and supervise postgraduate dissertations. Awards relating to these include:
- Winner of ‘The Dean’s Prize for Teaching Excellence’ in 2012.
- Winner of ‘The Dean’s Prize for Teaching Excellence’ in 2013.
- As programme director, 100% student satisfaction on the NSS in 2014.
- As programme director, 100% student satisfaction on the NSS in 2015.
- Nomination for partnership award under the mentor category in 2019.
- These awards were based on student satisfaction data on module reviews. I consistently receive excellent feedback and student satisfaction data on all modules on which I teach or lead (typically between 85% to 98% overall student satisfaction).
Additional Faculty Roles
- Programme Director of the BA HRM and BA Management with HR (2012-2015).
- Member of Faculty Taught Student Education Committee (2012-2015)
- Head of the year and personal tutor for BA HRM years 1, 2 and 3m rolling forward
- Access to Leeds scheme for HRM tutor for widening participation.
- Placement tutor for Industrial placement students.
- I sit on a number of additional faculty committees, including the faculty special cases committee and the faculty plagiarism committee.
Research groups and institutes
- Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change