• EH14 4AS

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Disability in the workplace (including neurodiversity); in-work poverty; sustainable HRM; trade union organising; leaveism


Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research interests


I am a member of the HRM group within the Management part of the Edinburgh Business School, at Heriot-Watt University, as well as a member of the Centre for Employment, Work and the Professions (CREWs).

I am a long-term Academic Member of the CIPD, a Fellow of the HE Academy, and member of BAM, BSA and BUIRA.

I recently became Co-Director of Engagement within the School of Social Sciences - key aspects of this role include building a culture of engagement across the School, and preparing the School for the impact element of REF2029.

My teaching role involves co-ordination of courses on Employment Relations (hons level), and Sustainable Human Resource Management (PGT MSc).

I was previously (2012-2022) the Research Ethics Officer in the School of Social Sciences, Chairing the University's Research Ethics Committee, 2017-2020 - key achievements during my time in this role including developing a global University policy and practice on research ethics, and the implementing the first University-wide research ethics information system – Infonetica.

Research (current)

I am CI (2023-2026) on the newly awarded EDI Caucus (EDICa) grant (£4.2m), acting as PI on the Organisation of Work workstream.

Within EDICa, I am PI on a project looking at the impact of doctoral training grants on EDI for PhD students (£50k).

A third project (and further prospective impact case study) I am a PI on involves trade union organising responses to the balloting thresholds of the Trade Union Act 2016 - a paper was recently (2021) published on new and innovative organising skills in Personnel Review, a further paper extending such work was presented to BUIRA 2021 and the ILO's 7th Regulating for Decent Work conference, and is currently being prepared for submission to a high-ranking industrial relations journal.

Research (recent/past)

I was PI on a recently completed third research project (2022-2023, in partnership with Into Work and funded via Inspiring Scotland) (£14k), a project looking to take the lived experience of autism and employment, plus the lived experience of managing autistic employees, to extend Scotland's Fair Work Framework to include the autistic workforce - see our newly published summary report here.

I was CI (2018-2022) on a highly successful EPSRC funded Disability Inclusive Science Careers (DISC) project (£494k), a project leading to evidence-based training for managers of disabled STEM-based staff (contact me if you want to know more about such training).

Research (seeking funding)

A key project I am seeking funding for involves building a network to transform unions to represent the neurdivergent workforce (TURN) - see a press release detailing a first meeting of this network. The network and prospective research to build capacity in UK union to represent the neurodivergent workforce builds on a C17 REF2021 impact case study rated 4-star.

A second project I lead on investigates the emergent practice of Leaveism (@Leavism) - one paper from the project (theorising leaveism) has recently been published in Human Resource Management Journal (open source), with a further paper on leaveism and well-being presented to the 42nd International Labour Process Conference in Gottingen, Germany, 3-5 April 2024.


Key recent publications involve meaning of work in Sri Lanka (Journal of Critical Realism), lived experience of auism in employment (Autism in Adulthood) leaveism (HRMJ), sustainable HRM (Employee Relations), managing leaky bodies in the workplace (Sociology of Health and Illness),  job quality and gig work (International Journal of HRM), trade union organising (Personnel Review), and socially irresponsible HRM (International Journal of HRM).

Doctorial supervision

I currently supervise twelve PhD/DBA students on the following topics: marketing of disability services to employees and employers, chronic ill-health and academic careers, history and emergence of HRM, hybrid working in call centres, disability in professional working, autism and employment (3 students), industrial relations and corporate bias, coaching women leaders in Pakistan, and trade union organising in Nigeria.

I have supervised 10 PhD students to completion on the following topics: socially irresponsible HRM in the betting shop industry, job quality and gig work, LGBTQ+ and academic work, work values in the third-sector, intersectionality and experiences of work for women Polish migrants, bi-polar disorder and the workplace, lived experiences of Nigerian line managers under strategic HRM, meaning of work in Sri Lanka, the labour process in the music industry, and, human resource management in the Chinese oil industry.

External roles

I am a postgraduate (MSc) external examiner at the University of Stirling (2020-) and Cardiff University (2023-). I also hold external roles with Scottish Government - Labour Market Evidence Network (2023-) and an advisory board member on the Disability Inclusive Remote and Hybrid Working project, hosted at Lancaster University.

I was a member of the Editorial Board for Work, Employment and Society (2019-2023). I have also examined PhD students at Nottingham Trent University, Cranfield University, and University of Strathclyde, and previously held external undergraduate examiner roles at Edinburgh Napier University and the University of Bradford.

I am also an ad hoc reviewer for more than 20 journals: Culture and Organization; Cyberpsychology; Economic and Industrial Democracy; Employee Relations; Equality, Diversity and Inclusion; Organization; Human Relations; Human Resource Management Journal; Human Resource Management; International Business Review; International Human Resource Management Journal; International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management; International Journal of Management Reviews; International Perspective of Equality and Diversity; Journal of Human Resources Costing and Accounting; Journal of Management and Organization; Journal of Managerial Psychology; Journal of Marketing Management; Journal of Organisational Ethnography; International Journal of Retail Distribution Management; Labour and Industry; New Technology, Work and Employment; Personnel Review. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

ESRC Peer Review College

9 Apr 2024 → …

Cardiff University

13 Oct 202331 Oct 2027

Scottish Government - Labour Market Evidence Network

1 Sept 202331 Mar 2024

Lancaster University

15 Feb 20231 Jan 2025

University of Stirling

1 Oct 202030 Nov 2024

Work, Employment and Society

25 Jan 201924 Jan 2023

Edinburgh Napier University

1 May 201631 Aug 2020

University of Bradford

1 Jun 20141 May 2016


  • HM Sociology
  • H Social Sciences (General)


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