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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Daniel F. Jacoby
Bothell Campus

Issues in Labor and Human Resources

Examines issues in the changing arena of labor and human resource policy.

Class description

This course focuses on 3 sets of issues and policies. The first introduces the macroeconomic interconnections that increasingly make markets global. In this context we ask into the global governance mechanisms that might replace local regulation over basic labor conditions. In this conjunction we ask, "Is a global safety net desirable and if so is it achievable?"

The second set of issues asks whether globalization makes current trends towards flexible and contingent employment relations inevitable? We'll look at the extent to which various industrial nations have attempted policies to deal with employment conditions that are increasingly categorized by short term or casual contracts, limited employer provided benefits, and part-time or adjustable hours. Similarly, we also inquire into the persistence of informal markets in developing countries, and the connections that may exist between informality and government regulations designed to improve labor conditions.

Finally, we'll look at the question of unionization in a global economy. What are its prospects? Can and should it be promoted? What kind of variations exist and which of these address conditions currently at play in the global economy.

Graduate students in this course will be required to write a 20 page paper, and may will be asked to provide leadership in discussing some papers and texts.

Student learning goals

Examine how workers around the world are affected by globalization

To apply economic tools and policy analysis to global labor issues.

To appreciate how differences across nations affect their labor movements, policies and institutions.

General method of instruction

Seminar involve will blend project, texts, and discussion.

Likely to require additional attendance at one or more guest lecture and site visit.

Recommended preparation

Background in policy studies (at least the equivalent to BPOLST 500) highly recommended.

Class assignments and grading

In addition to standard assignments for the class, graduate students will write a 10-15 page term paper.

Graduate student will be asked to help lead seminars and to write a 20 page research paper.

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Daniel F. Jacoby
Date: 02/20/2014