York centre gets SSHRC grant for major research initiative

The Centre for Research on Work and Society (CRWS) will examine the nature of the “new economy” in Canada and how changes in the labour market and the structure of work are affecting Canadians’ lives, with a $900,000 grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). Vice-President Research & Innovation Stan Shapson, who is also a council member of SSHRC, made the announcement yesterday at a news conference.

“This funding recognizes the importance of strong social sciences research to ensure that Canada responds to global economic challenges in a way that benefits all Canadians,” said Shapson. He said the research project, Restructuring Work and Labour in the New Economy, has important policy implications as governments seek creative and effective responses to the transformation of labour and employment.

“Our research will help to inform union researchers and other policy makers about equity issues and how job restructuring and labour market transformation have affected skills, opportunities, access to work and social citizenship,” said CRWS director, principal researcher and sociology Prof. Norene Pupo, Faculty of Arts. “We will be considering the labour movement’s response to change as well as the transformation in public policy due to globalization.”

“Too often when we think of research, we first think of science and technology,” added Shapson. “However, now more than ever, we appreciate the limitations of science and technology alone; and in the same vein, appreciate the importance of developing new understandings about the complex issues facing our society if we are to emerge as leaders in the global economy.

The three-year project involves scholars in a variety of disciplines at 10 universities, and collaborators from eight trade unions. They will analyze trends and patterns of change since 1986 and their effects on the well being and security of Canadian families. The research will be conducted through SSHRC’s Initiative on the New Economy (INE) program.

For further details on the CRWS’s project, visit the Media Relations Web site at: http://www.yorku.ca/ycom/release/archive/121002.htm.