Precarious Scheduling and Insecure Work

I began my research into insecure work during my Masters at the Cambridge University Department of Sociology in 2010/2011 which under the supervision of Brendan Burchell, focused on the causes and consequences of precarity.

My PhD (2011-2016, also at the Cambridge Sociology Department under Brendan’s supervision) continued this research and has been published in the journals Human Relations and Work, Employment and Society, and Cornell University Press will be publishing a book based on my thesis on May 15th 2020 titled Despotism On Demand: How Power Operates in the Flexible Workplace.

I am continuing my work in this area in my new position as a Lecturer in the Sociology of Work at the University of Birmingham. This current research includes an empirical investigation of David Graeber’s theory of Bullshit Jobs.

Current collaborators

Brendan Burchell Magdalena Soffia

Selected publications

Wood A.J (2o20) Despotism on Demand: How Power Operates in the Flexible Workplace. Cornell
University Press: Iithaca NY.

Paperback $26.95 US:

Ebook $12.99

Paperback £20.99 UK

Wood A.J (2018) Powerful Times: Flexible Discipline and Schedule Gifts at Work. Work, Employment and Society 32(6): 1061–1077 [ABS 4].

Wood A.J (2016) Flexible scheduling, the degradation of job quality and barriers to collective voice. Human Relations 69(10): 1989-2010 [ABS 4, FT50].

Wood A.J and Burchell B.J (2018) Unemployment and well-being. In Lewis A (ed) Cambridge Handbook of Psychology and Economic Behaviour 2nd Edition. Cambridge University Press.

Burchell B.J and Wood A.J (2017) You Are Never Secure: UK Workers in the Era of ‘Flexibility’. In Svendsen Z and Daw S (eds) World Factory: The Game. Nick Hern Books.

Wood A.J, Burchell B.J and Coutts A (2016) From Zero Joy to Zero Stress: Making Flexible Scheduling Work: The University of Cambridge Zero2Zero Workshops. A report published as part of a ESRC Impact Acceleration Award project.

Wood A.J and Burchell B.J (2014) Zero Hour Contracts as a Source of Job Insecurity. Report submitted March 2014 to the UK Government Department of Business Innovation and Skills Consultation on Zero Hour Contracts.

Working papers

Soffia M, Wood A.J and Burchell B.J (in development) Alienation isn’t Bullshit: An Empirical Critique of Graeber’s ‘Theory of BS Jobs’.