1st Edition

Universities and the Labour Market Graduate Transitions from Education to Employment

By Magdalena Jelonek Copyright 2022
    162 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    162 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Debate surrounding the employability of graduates has been around for many decades, and interest in this area has grown particularly since the start of this century. Tackling this relevant area of scholarship, this book uses an innovative approach to analyse the relationship between the university and the labour market from different perspectives, taking into account both sociological and economic theories. Key areas explored include work transition, graduate employability, and the effects of public interventions/initiatives which are aimed at matching the competences of graduates to labour market needs.

    The chapters summarise several years of author original research, including study on the employability of graduates in Poland more specifically, and the effects of their public interventions to increase graduate employment and facilitate entry into the workforce (e.g. Commissioned Fields of Study, Competences Development Programme). More generally, university – labour market relations are analysed from three perspectives: micro (understood as individual characteristics shaping educational and occupational choices and decisions), and meso and macro (e.g. features of the education system and such as the strength of the signal sent by HE diplomas; the macroeconomic situation and the condition of the labour market and the state of debate on general and employability competences and its implications). The conclusions made are pertinent given ongoing debates around graduate mismatch in the labour market, as well as the questioning of tuition fees and the role of the university in society more broadly.

    The interdisciplinary nature of this book makes it of great interest to academics, researchers and postgraduate students in the areas of sociology, economy, public policy, and also to practitioners designing educational interventions themselves.

    Part I. The transition from graduation to work – theoretical perspectives

    Chapter I.1. Human Capital Theory

    Chapter I.2. Education as a positional good

    Chapter I.3. Social Closure Models



    Part II. Structural-institutional settings, individual characteristics and university-work transition

    Chapter II.1. Employability skills agenda, skills race and IV Industrial Revolution

    Chapter II.2. Individual characteristics and university to work transition

    Chapter II.3. Structural-institutional settings and university to work transition



    Part III. University-work transition and public interventions - the case of Competence Development Program in Poland

    Chapter III.1. The Competence Development Program – genesis and characteristics

    Chapter III.2. The Competence Development Program – effects of intervention

    Annexe III.2


    Annex III




    Magdalena Jelonek is a sociologist and assistant professor at the Cracow University of Economics, and researcher (adjunct) at Centre for Evaluation and Analysis of Public Policies at Jagiellonian University, Poland. Her current research interests are: evaluation of public policy, HE sector analysis, human capital, transition from HE to the labour market and methodology of the social sciences (e.g. survey research, quasi-experimental design). She took part in dozens of research projects (as a team member or project leader). One of these projects is the Study of Human Capital in Poland – a series of longitudinal nation-wide surveys for monitoring competence, skill gaps and mismatches in polish labour market.