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2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

LUBS3096 Global Perspectives on Work and Employment

20 creditsClass Size: 100

Module manager: Asiya Islam

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2022/23

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

The changing nature of work and employment will be explored in a global context, considering changes in labour markets and regulatory mechanisms. This module will provide students with knowledge of how contemporary developments in work and employment and the interplay of national systems and international agencies are shaping approaches to people management and employment relations. New forms of work, including gig work and informal work, coupled with demographic challenges and migration are explored in the context of regulatory mechanisms and strategies for human capital formation.


Globalization is considered as it interacts with and operates through local structures and is mediated by transnational enterprises and international regulatory bodies. Economic and institutional differences at the level of regions and countries will be explored through a thematic analysis of human resource management and employment relations in different economic areas.

While North American approaches to managing people have global impact, this module will question their universal applicability even within the USA, as well as their transferability to other regions. Within Europe, differences will be linked to more nuanced versions of the Varieties of Capitalism thesis, paying attention to post-socialist transition economies. Asia will be given in-depth treatment, not only the powerhouses of China, India, Japan and Korea but also the fast-growing economies of ASEAN, countries affected by the belt and road initiative, Africa and other parts of the Global South.

Learning outcomes
Upon completion of this module, students will be able to critically evaluate:
- key developments in HRM and employment relations around different regions and how patterns of manging human capital relate to specific economies;
- how these patterns of managing human capital interact with national systems, transnational enterprises and international regulatory actors;
- why employment relations and HRM practices differ between firms, sectors and countries and how contextual factors impact upon these practices;
- policy challenges for regulating work, employment and migration and contextual factors limiting the scope for policy transfer.

Skills outcomes
Upon completion of this module students will acquire the following skills.

- to communicate effectively both orally and in writing;
- to work effectively both independently and in teams.

Subject Specific:
- to self-reflect and be sensitive to diversity in terms of people and cultures;
- to evaluate complexities of human resource strategies and how these change over time.


Global shift: liberalization, economic crises and restructuring, demographic influences, unemployment, policy approaches to employability and skills mismatches.

Globalization and decentralization: the role of supra-national (EU, ASEAN) and international institutions (ILO, OECD) in formulating employment policy and labour standards.

Geography matters: building on Varieties of Capitalism, country differences in regulatory frameworks, labour market institutions and human capital formation.

Recent developments in HRM and employment relations: North America as a benchmark? Diversity in European models, Africa and the global South, Asia (China, India, Japan, Korea, ASEAN).

Labour mobility: theories of migration, empirical evidence in patterns of migration, regulation, agency, undocumented migrants, exploitation and modern slavery. Different regimes of labour market integration.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours179.00
Total Contact hours21.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Students will undertake independent learning preparing for each seminar topic (80 hours total). The remaining private study time will be spent preparing for the coursework and examination.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Feedback to be provided during seminars, and in response to student (non-assessed) presentations in seminars. Students will also be given the opportunity to seek guidance on the coursework assessment. Written feedback and a provisional mark for the coursework will be provided prior to the examination.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay2,000 words40.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)40.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc)2 hr 00 mins60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)60.00

The resit for this module will be 100% by 3 hour examination.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 06/05/2022


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