Center for Interdisziplinary Research

ZiF Research Group

Opening Conference
In Search of the Global Labour Market: Actors, Structures and Policies

16 - 18 October 2017

Convenors: Ursula Mense-Petermann (Bielefeld, GER), Thomas Welskopp (Bielefeld, GER), Anna Zaharieva (Bielefeld, GER)

Globalisation is on everybody´s lips. It is often mentioned to describe dynamic changes of present times, also in the labour markets. There is, however, little verifiable empirical knowledge about the consequences of globalisation for labour markets. Thus, it is unclear what exactly is meant by the global labour market and how this phenomenon should be treated in research and politics.

It is not without reason that the title of the ZiF Research Group 2017/18 is In Search of the Global Labour Market - it is also a search of adequate methods for investigating this phenomenon.

Scientists from global history, labour economics and political science as well as sociology, international management, migration research and East Asian studies will discuss interdisciplinary perspectives and approaches on the globalisation of the labour market.

On the first day of the conference, Monday October 16, the economist Prof. Michael J. Piore (MIT Cambridge) will give his opening lecture on policy paradigms and the challenge to immigration and globalisation. Throughout the next days, the fellows of the group will present their research results within four panels: First, there is a question, what can be conceived as global labour market from a theoretical perspective, and what exactly is the commodity traded here; Second, what can we say about a (historical) emergence of global labour markets; Third, what enables a market to cross national borders and how is this transformation influenced by existing institutions, international intermediaries and social networks; and in the fourth panel the group will discuss the role of migration and the growing mobility of the workforce for the transformation of national labour markets towards a single global market. At the closing of the conference, on October 18, Prof. Frédéric Docquier PhD (Université Catholique de Louvain) speaks about the effects of the last migration wave on European labour markets.

The conference language will be English.

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