Professor Chris Rees

Research interests

  • the sociology of work & employment
  • employee representation, participation & involvement
  • corporate governance & employee voice
  • critical perspectives on employee empowerment & engagement
  • the employment consequences of mergers & takeovers
  • transnational labour regulation
  • work & employment in multinational companies
  • pluralist employment relations / labour process theory / critical realism

I welcome enquiries from prospective PhD students interested in undertaking doctoral research in any of these areas.

Personal profile

I joined Royal Holloway in 2008, having previously been a lecturer at Kingston University and a trade union research officer. I studied sociology at the University of Bristol and industrial relations at the University of Warwick.

My research has centred around projects covering the following topics: employee involvement in ‘total quality management’ and ‘lean production’ systems; employment relations and internal politics in cross-border MNC mergers; European information and consultation processes; employee voice and employee engagement; trade unions and corporate social responsibility in Europe; direct participation and partnership employment relations. I am currently collaborating with the Involvement and Participation Association (IPA) on a study of the connections between governance, work and voice in large UK firms.

These projects have been funded from a variety of sources – including the European Commission, the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound), the UK government Department for Trade and Industry (DTI), the Academy of Business in Society (ABIS), and an employer consortium.

My research has been published in a number of reports and in a range of journals - including European Journal of Industrial Relations, Human Resource Management Journal, Economic and Industrial Democracy, Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research, Employee Relations, Business and Society, Public Management Review, Journal of Industrial Relations, International Journal of Human Resource Management, Work Employment and Society, and Organization Studies.

I am co-editor with Tony Edwards of the book International Human Resource Management: Globalization, National Systems and Multinational Companies (3rd edition, 2017), and co-editor with Lutz Preuss and Michael Gold of Corporate Social Responsibility and Trade Unions: Perspectives Across Europe (2015). 

Some of my publications are available on Academia and Research Gate.

I am on the Associate Editorial Board of the journal Work Employment and Society, and a member of the BSABUIRA and SASE.

My core teaching is on the MSc Human Resource Management programme.

Educational background

BSc Sociology (first), University of Bristol

MA Industrial Relations (distinction), University of Warwick

PhD, University of Warwick

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