Most of us spend the vast majority of our days working, and this can take many forms. Not only that, but the way in which we work has changed in revolutionary ways over the past century, let alone since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. This theme cross cuts our academies and interlinks with our other cross-cutting themes such that we can understand the ramifications different types of work have for our health and wellbeing, how work is a social determinant of wellness and ill-health and how we might best build resilience to illness inside and outside of the workplace leading to worklessness.
This theme encourages researchers from a variety of disciplines to organise projects and programs that explore the world of work and its social implications for individual health and wellbeing and a healthy society. We take an encompassing approach addressing issues of race, age, gender and where people are in their life cycle as their capacities and needs change over time and affect people’s physical and mental health. Research has established that poor work and working conditions contribute to bad health. More research is needed looking into the implications of critical changes in labour markets, labour law, and new technologies, on the experiences of working people and their health and wellbeing.
Social determinants shape health and wellbeing in individuals and populations. It is important to know and understand the risks workers face and how it manifests itself in the individual and in the community. Worker’s subjective risk perceptions are central to their health behaviour and vary cross-culturally.
Worker-focused advocacy organisations such as unions, worker organizations, business, and government provide direction for policies and actions to improve worker health and wellbeing. Research into these institutions can assist management and policy makers in decisions about health protection enhancing the quality of life for individual workers, and their families in the UK and around the world.