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Short-term employment relationship leading to ‘gig economy’: Dr. Anneleen Forrier

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‘International Conference on the Changing Nature of Careers’ begins at XLRI

Jamshedpur, Dec. 14: XLRI- Xavier School of Management hosts the ‘International Conference on the Changing Nature of Careers’ on 14th – 15th December, 2018. The conference, anchored by the Centre for Human Resource Development (CHRD) of XLRI, is being co-chaired by Prof. Michael Arthur (Suffolk University, USA), Dr. Anneleen Forrier (KU Leaven, Belgium), and Dr. R K Premarajan (XLRI, India).

The conference was inaugurated today in presence of Fr. E. Abraham S.J. (Director, XLRI), Dr. Anneleen Forrier (KU Leaven, Belgium) and other dignitaries at XLRI Campus, Jamshedpur.

Fr. E. Abraham S.J., Director, XLRI delivered the welcome address at the inaugural session. In his address, Fr. Abraham said, “The theme of the conference is very relevant theme in contemporary India, which needs the energy and passion of the youth to address some of the most critical issues which the country is facing. Discussions about the employment impact of change have often been polarized between those who foresee limitless opportunities in newly emerging job categories and prospects that improve workers’ productivity and liberate them from routine work, and those doubting Thomases that foresee massive labour substitution and displacement of jobs. Academics, chief executives and labour leaders hold strong and diverse views on the debate, as do policymakers. While forecasts vary by industry and region, momentous change is underway. Ultimately, it is our actions today that will determine whether that change mainly results in massive displacement of workers or the emergence of new opportunities in the workplace.”

“In this gathering, we have speakers and participants from different countries, and many other young people who are working in the sector. I hope that this conference will help us to re-invent the traditional career model and workplace to make it easier for people to utilize the skill-sets they have and leverage them in new roles within the organization,” he further added.

Dr. Anneleen Forrier (KU Leaven, Belgium) delivered the Keynote Address and spoke on ‘Employability in a Shifting Global Employment Arena’. She said, “The nature of the employment relationship itself is becoming more short-term and flexible, leading to the emergence of contingent work and the so-called ‘gig economy’. Hence, the Conference aims to examine how these changing work relationships impact careers.”

Different sessions held throughout the day included – Paper Sessions, Practitioners Sessions and Panel Discussion.

The first Paper Session on the topic – ‘Cities, Clusters and Careers’ was chaired by Dr. John Blenkinsopp. During the session, Dr. Shreyashi Chakraborty presented paper on ‘City Identity: What It Is For Work And How It Interacts With Career Orientation’ authored by Amit Jain; Dr. Jelena Zikic and Viktoriya Voloshyna presented paper on ‘The role of the receiving city in negotiating new migrant career pathways’; and Dr. Michael Arthur presented paper on ‘Intelligent careers and intelligent regions: How regional clusters learn through professionals’ careers enactment’ authored by Dr. Jean-Denis Culié and Dr. Svetlana N. Khapova.

The second Paper Session on the topic – ‘Women’s careers: Opting in versus opting out’ was chaired by Dr. Jeffrey Kennedy. During the session, Sasmita Dash presented paper on ‘Continued versus discontinued: A comparative study of work-family balance and career issues in case of women leaders in India’; Dr. Tania S Rath presented paper on ‘Reconstructing Concept of Work by Integrating Care Work for a Sustainable Career of Women’ authored by Dr. Mousumi Padhi; and Dr. John Blenkinsopp presented paper on ‘Some Choices, Many Constraints: exploring the career development of female healthcare professionals in China’ authored by Shou Wang.

The third Paper Session of the day on the topic – ‘Career Transitions in unpredictable times’ was chaired by Dr. Anneleen Forrier. At the session, Ashna Sehgal presented paper on ‘Career Decision Making Difficulties across Different Stages of Life and Its Relation with Emotional Intelligence and Perfectionism’; Akhila Veldandi presented paper on ‘Mid-Career Crisis: Exhaustion Or Introspection?’; Lakshmi Bose presented paper on ‘Intrapersonal competencies and individual career outcomes: The influence of self-directedness’ authored by Karin Sanders and Leisa Sargent; Dr. Angela Stephanie Mazzetti presented paper on ‘In Sickness and In Health’ and Priyanka Vincent presented paper on ‘Redefining Job Insecurity as a Need for an Enhancing Career’ authored by Dr. Murale Venugopalan.

The first of the two Practitioners Sessions of day on the topic ‘Multiple Perspectives on Career and Talent Management’ was chaired by Dr. L. Gurunathan. The speakers at the session were Gaurav Lahiri- Partner, Deloitte; Nishith Mohanty- CHRO, Manipal Group; Sumit Neogi- VP, HR, Reliance Industries; Madhu Veeraraghavan- Director, T.A. Pai Management Institute and Shatrunjay Krishna- Korn Ferry.

The second Practitioners Session on the topic ‘Career and Talent Development Challenges in a Gig Economy’ was chaired by Dr. Kanchan Mukherjee. The speakers at the session were Dipti Sharma- Accenture; Ajay Sonkar- Adobe; Arinban Gupta, Aon Consulting Pvt. Ltd.; Tooba Modassir- Citi Bank; Sachin Vohra and Nitin Nangia- Quess Corporation and Sandeep Olkar, Wipro.

The final session of the day was the Panel Discussion. Chaired by Dr. Munish Thakur, XLRI, the panelists at the session were Dr. Tammy Allen, University of South Florida and Dr. Lillian Eby, University of Georgia, who discussed on the topic ‘Publishing Career Research in High Impact Journals’.

Talking about the conference, Dr. R K Premarajan, Co-chair of the Conference and Professor at XLRI said, “The Conference seeks to balance inspiration and implementation by providing a platform to both academics and practitioners to share their ideas and experiences. The conference will be unique in terms of the strong emphasis placed on linking practitioners from the world of corporate careers and scholars from the world of academics. A woefully inadequate focus on industry-academia collaboration is indeed holding back effective interventions premised on sound theory in the field of career and talent management.”

Elaborating about the conference, Co-chair and Professor Emeritus at Suffolk University, Dr. Michael Arthur stated “A shifting global employment landscape has serious implications for careers in both developed and emerging economies, as jobs become increasingly complex, uncertain and challenging. Thus, understanding how people adapt to the changing nature of work and shape their careers is a central focus of the conference. If the world is to become a safer place, we need to invest more deeply in the careers of its workers and help them become more successful – not only in their careers but in their contributions to a wider peace. It will be a peace nurtured by shared understanding across nations – where career opportunities are open to all people, and markets are responsive to the skills those people can bring.”

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