The Canadian Industrial Relations Association (CIRA) Conference Call for Papers:

Rethinking the Future of Employment:

Towards Institutions and Practices for a New Era

June 5-7, 2019 (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada)


The Sauder School of Business, UBC will host the 56th annual CIRA conference from June 5-7, 2019 as part of the 2019 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences taking place at the University of British Columbia in June 2019. Our goal is to bring together scholars, students, policymakers, and labour relations practitioners from across Canada and the globe on issues of work and employment relations.

The CIRA conference committee welcomes session proposals and papers that address the following theme: Rethinking the Future of Employment: Towards Institutions and Practices for a New Era. We welcome submissions from different disciplines and fields, including but not limited to Industrial Relations, Labour Relations, Labour Unions and Social Movements, Labour and Employment Law, Human Resource Management, Organizational Behaviour, Work, Globalization, and Migration, Diversity, Work Organization and Management, Economics, Sociology, and Political Science.

Across Canada, and in many countries, the advent of the gig economy, platform organizations, and artificial intelligence are transforming social relations in workplaces by disrupting institutions and practices governing work and employment. Which public policies will governments adopt to modify labour and employment protections accordingly? How can unions continue to attract and represent the individuals most affected by these transformations in employment relationships prompted by this industrial revolution? Will employers and human resources managers revise or continue with management models based on flexible employment that can create inequalities among workers?

At the same time, vulnerable groups within the workforce including low skilled workers, people working for agencies or subcontractors (indirect workforce), temporary foreign workers, and recent immigrants continue to face significant barriers within the labour market. How can governments and unions protect these groups and advocate on their behalf? What are some best practices to support diversity by ensuring inclusivity and equity for these groups so they have the necessary support to succeed in the labour market and improve their access to better jobs?

Finally, the recent rise in protectionism creates much economic uncertainty. How does this questioning of free trade as exemplified by the renegotiation of NAFTA which led to the USMCA create positive or negative implications for labour and employment relations?

We welcome and encourage proposals that address other themes and issues related to the broad and interdisciplinary field of Work, Employment, Labour Studies, Human Resources, and Industrial Relations. Our CIRA conference is a welcoming forum for researchers, practitioners, and public policymakers to exchange ideas and findings on all issues related to work and employment. Presentations may take various forms including symposia, panels, and papers discussions. The number of tracks and sessions depends on the quality and quantity of proposals.

Please also consider submitting a proposal to organize a 90 minute session. We require that sessions include a session abstract and description, identify participants (confirmed or invited), and provide full contact information at the time of submission for all session participants. Submissions may be in English or French and are subject to a blind peer review.

Submission deadline for papers and sessions: February 15, 2019 (extended deadline). Please submit both paper abstracts, and session proposals to http://www.cira-acri.ca/abstract-resume/.

Students wishing to apply to the Allen Ponak Best Student Paper Award Competition and the David Doorey Law of Work Award Competition should submit a full paper before February 15, 2019. Both French and English student submissions are welcome. Please submit your submission to ciraacri.conference@gmail.com

A Doctoral Student Consortium is also being organized and will be held on June 5, 2019, the afternoon before the conference’s opening evening plenary session.

Please send any questions to the following email address: ciraacri.conference@gmail.com.

Vancouver Aerial 2017.jpg