International Conference


24-26 May 2007
HEC Montreal, Canada

Work and employment have changed radically in recent decades. New information technologies, economic globalization and the rise of neo-liberalism, the massive workforce participation of women, huge disparities between formal and informal labour markets, labour migration and increasing ethnic diversity, the aging of the labour force, and new values regarding work and career as well as the balance between work life and family life are just a few of the changes sweeping the world of work. As a result, there are numerous labour market configurations, where the best and the worst often operate within the same national space.

These new realities of work and employment are a challenge to most of the state social policies crafted at the zenith of the industrial era, in the mid-20th century. State policies were predicated on a national conception of the welfare state and collective bargaining as the primary instrument for determining working conditions. Paid employment, through the prism of Fordist work organization, provided access to this nexus. Economic efficiency and security could be reconciled through the participation of social actors in institutions with a universalistic vocation in terms of labour force coverage. Now, however, in addition to changes in employment, the role of social actors and the nation-state are weakened as regards their capacity to command renewed public policies for work. There results a fragmented and often episodic social protection that is broken up both during and after the working life (ex: employment insurance, social rights, retirement), unequal support for professional mobility (e.g. training), highly differentiated working conditions (e.g. unionized vs. non-unionized, variations between industries) and considerable difficulty ensuring compliance of fundamental rights at work (e.g. minimum labour standards, constitutionalized rights).

This contemporary labour market diagnostic raises important questions for our understanding of social cohesion and economic efficiency at work: 

These are the questions that the Interuniversity Research Centre on Globalization and Work (CRIMT) and its Rethinking Institutions for Work and Employment in the Global Era project (Major Collaborative Research Initiatives program of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada) invite you to discuss at an international Conference on public policies for work and employment in the global era. This conference will be held in both English and French. There will be researchers in various social science disciplines, those in charge of developing public policies and representatives of social actors and labour market partners.

Organizing Committee: 

Annick CHAREST, Administrative Coordinator, CRIMT, University of Montreal
Jean CHAREST, Professor, School of Industrial Relations, University of Montreal
Francine JACQUES, Project Manager, CRIMT, Université Laval
Lucie MORISSETTE, Professor, Department of Human Resources Management, HEC Montreal
Gregor MURRAY, Professor, School of Industrial Relations, University of Montreal
Nicolas ROBY, Scientific Coordinator, CRIMT, University of Montreal
Gilles TRUDEAU, Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Montreal

Web Design and Administration:

Nicolas ROBY, Scientific Coordinator, CRIMT, University of Montreal