- The Oxford Handbook of Skills and Training
- List of Contributors
- Introduction: Skills and Training: Multiple Targets, Shifting Terrain
- Disciplinary Perspectives on Skill
- Skill Builders and the Evolution of National Vocational Training Systems
- The Changing Meaning of Skill: Still Contested, Still Important
- A New Social Construction of Skill
- Measuring Job Content: Skills, Technology, and Management Practices
- Accreditation and Assessment in Vocational Education and Training
- Education and Qualifications as Skills
- Pre-Employment Skill Formation in Australia and Germany
- Skill Development in Middle-level Occupations: The Role of Apprenticeship Training
- What Is Expected of Higher Education Graduates in the Twenty-first Century?
- Employer-Led In-Work Training and Skill Formation: The Challenges of Multi-Varied and Contingent Phenomena
- Unions, the Skills Agenda, and Workforce Development
- A Working Lifetime of Skill and Training Needs
- Skill Under-utilization
- Business Strategies and Skills
- Measuring Skills Stock, Job Skills, and Skills Mismatch
- The Individual Benefits of Investing in Skills
- The Economic and Social Benefits of Skills
- Theorizing Skill Formation in the Global Economy
- Different National Skill Systems
- Skill Ecosystems
- Employment Systems, Skills, and Knowledge
- Skill Demands and Developments in the Advanced Economies
- Approaches to Skills in the Asian Developmental States
- Emerging Economic Powers: The Transformation of the Skills Systems in China and India
- Projecting the Impact of Information Technology on Work and Skills in the 2030s
- International Skill Flows and Migration
- Professional Skills: Impact of Comparative Political Economy
- Skills and Training for the Older Population: Training the New Work Generation
- Rethinking Skills Development: Moving Beyond Competency-Based Training
- Who Pays for Skills?: Differing Perspectives on Who Should Pay and Why
- Current Challenges: Policy Lessons and Implications
- Author Index
Abstract and Keywords
‘Skill’ has long been a contested concept within the social sciences. In recent decades, the use of the term by policy makers, employers and academics has broadened considerably, fuelling debate about what skill is and what constitutes skilled work. With ‘skill’ purportedly encompassing behaviours such as discipline and conformity, the concept is said to be in danger of losing its meaning or significance. The growth of interactive service work has also seen the emergence of new and controversial skill concepts such as emotional, aesthetic and articulation work. Are so-called ‘low skilled’ service jobs really low skilled and might recognition of these hidden skills help to achieve better pay, or is there a risk of exaggerating their skill content and raising unrealistic expectations? This chapter charts these controversies, and argues for placing skill in its societal and workplace context and taking seriously issues of power, job complexity and worker autonomy.
Jonathan Payne is Reader in Employment Studies in Leicester Business School at De Montfort University in the United Kingdom. His research interests and publications span the political economy of skill formation and use, vocational education and training policy in the United Kingdom, the changing meaning of “skill”, workplace innovation, and job quality.
Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.
If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.