Call for Papers: Research in the Sociology of Work Special Issue on Professional Work

Professional Work: Knowledge, Power, and Inequality

Call for Papers to be published in Research in the Sociology of Work

 Elizabeth Gorman and Steven Vallas, editors

Professional occupations have undergone enormous changes in recent years. Markets for many professional services have globalized.  Information technology has markedly transformed the work that professionals and knowledge workers do.  Organizations employing professionals have grown larger and more bureaucratic –and in many cases, they have outsourced core functions to suppliers of professional and para-professional labor located in the global south. New occupations such as “data scientists” are making claims to professional status, while members of many older professions are forced to market themselves in ever more entrepreneurial ways.  Some professionals have become the consiglieres of large corporations, dedicated to facilitating their pursuit of business interests, raising questions about their professional independence.  Some professions (such as journalism) have experienced wrenching technological changes that have eroded the autonomy (and the jobs) of many practitioners. Moreover, inequality within professions has grown sharply; in higher education, for example, tenured and tenure-track professors account for a shrinking minority of university faculty. In the face of these and other changes, traditional forms of professional self-regulation have been called into question, with far-reaching consequences for the social order as a whole.

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A Brief Report on Research in the Sociology of Work

Steven Vallas, Northeastern University

Sociologists studying work, organizations, and economic institutions will already know about Research in the Sociology of Work, sponsored by OOW for several years now. Here’s brief report on recent events. Now using a hybrid model, RSW is open to both general-topic submissions in the field and to papers responding to thematic calls for special issues.

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Two Featured Articles in RSW Available for Members

RSW is happy to report that two featured articles in the current issue of RSW can be freely accessed on the publisher’s website. Below are the titles and abstracts. The first is Robin Leidner’s study of actors holding “survival jobs,” and struggling to maintain their identities as professional actors. The other is David Orzechowicz’s study of a seemingly gay-friendly work culture at a well-known amusement park. Both are provocative pieces that make for interesting reading.  The links should work, or simply point your browser here and scroll for the papers:

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Call for Papers: Papers on Precarious Work to be Published in Research in the Sociology of Work

Precarious Work: Causes, Characteristics and Consequences

 Call for Papers to be Published in Research in the Sociology of Work

 Arne L. Kalleberg and Steven Vallas, editors

The economic crisis of 2008-9 has exacerbated a long-standing trend in industrial nations toward the rise of precarious work, or work that is uncertain, insecure and in which risks are shifted from employers (and governments) to workers. Notable examples of precarious work include temporary and contract work as well as the jobs in the “gig” or sharing economy.  Surely, many workers derive an increased sense of autonomy from the rise of these forms of work. But for other workers—very likely a majority of those affected—the expansion of precarious work represents a shift toward more insecure and unrewarding positions, signaling a dramatic shift in the very logic that governs work and employment under contemporary capitalism. Though these developments have been much studied, much remains to be known.

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OOW Sponsorship of RSW and RSO

The OOW Section is pleased to officially announce its sponsorship of two related publications: Research in the Sociology of Organizations and Research in the Sociology of Work, both published by Emerald Group Publishing.

In addition to announcing the sponsorship to our members, a statement that the volumes are “Sponsored by the ASA Section on Organizations, Occupations and Work” will appear, during the sponsorship term, on the front covers of volumes published, on the homepage of the related publications, and on leaflets and other advertising materials which promote the publications and volumes.

Importantly for our members, Emerald has agreed to  provide free electronic access to papers published in the publications, for agreed limited periods, and has agreed to contribute $1,500 USD annually towards the section. Emerald has also agreed to provide a 30% discount for OOW members of the print copies of the volumes.

The parties agreed on a period of one year (January 1— December 31, 2016) for this sponsorship, after which it will be reviewed by all parties for continuation.