Research Professor
Cardiff University

Professor Alan Felstead has degrees from the University of Cambridge, the University of Warwick and Imperial College, University of London. He has held positions at Nuffield College, University of Oxford and the University of Leicester. Since 2006 he has been a Research Professor at Cardiff School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University. His research focuses on: the quality of work; training, skills and learning; non-standard employment; and the spaces and places of work. Professor Felstead has completed numerous funded research projects (including 16 funded by the Economic and Social Research Council), produced seven books, and written over 200 journal articles, book chapters, research reports and discussion papers. He has generated research income of £9.3 million with grants from, for example, the ESRC, UK government departments, devolved administrations, the European Union and the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP). He has delivered many keynote addresses to conferences around the world, including China, Singapore, South Africa, Australia and Europe, and given labour market advice to policy-makers inside and outside the UK.

He has been the lead researcher on the latest two Skills and Employment Surveys (carried out in 2012 and 2017) and has been a key member of the research team responsible for the survey since 1997 (www.cardiff.ac.uk/ses2017).  His latest book,'Unequal Britain at Work', was published in 2015 by Oxford University Press.  According to one reviewer the book 'is impressive for its timespan, depth and rigour', while for another it offers a 'welcome' and 'nuanced empirical analysis ... very relevant to policy debate'. His other books have also drawn praise.

Improving Working as Learning, London: Routledge, 2009, won a prestigious prize from the Society for Educational Studies awarded for books in print that year.

Changing Places of Work, London: Palgrave, 2005, also made an impact, with one reviewer rating it as a 'significant book' prompting us to 'rediscover and rethink the socio-spatial organisation of work'.

He has been Visiting Professor at the ESRC Centre for Learning and Life Chances in Knowledge Economies and Societies (LLAKES), UCL Institute of Education since 2009, he was appointed a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences (FAcSS) in 2011 and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales (FLSW) in 2013, and is a Senior Member of the ESRC's Peer Review College.  He was a Visiting Research Fellow at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills between 2010 and 2012, he sat on the Welsh Government's Fair Work Commission as the Independent Expert Advisor in 2018-2019 and in 2019-2020 he was seconded to Welsh Government on a part-time basis.


Labour Market Implications of Changes in the Public Sector: Work Quality
Pay and Job Quality: Is the Grass Greener in the Public Sector? The unadjusted public-private sector pay differential has attracted considerable political interest since the coalition government came to power in the UK in 2010. It has been used to justify changes to pay
Research Team:
Philip Murphy (Swansea University), David Blackaby (Swansea University), Melanie Jones (Cardiff University), Victoria Wass, Gerald Makepeace, Alan Felstead (Cardiff University)
Skills and Employment Survey
Overview WISERD funded a boost to the Skills and Employment Survey to be carried out across Britain in 2012. The overarching aim of the survey was to collect data on skills and employment experiences of those working in Britain in 2012, making it a key and distinctive
Research Team:
Alan Felstead (Cardiff University), Rhys Davies (Cardiff University)
Labour Market Implications of Changes in the Public Sector
In 2010 the UK coalition Government committed itself to an active policy of fiscal consolidation designed to ‘eliminate’ the structural deficit by the end of the current parliament (HM Budget, March 2011). As part of their consolidation plans the Government announced its
Research Team:
Philip Murphy (Swansea University), David Blackaby (Swansea University), Melanie Jones (Cardiff University), Victoria Wass, Gerald Makepeace, Alan Felstead (Cardiff University)
Labour Market Implications of Changes in the Public Sector: Inequality
The UK gender Pay gap 1998-2013: What is the role of the public sector? The Quarterly Labour Force Survey was used to compare gender wage gap in the public and private sectors between 1998 and 2013 and to identify the contribution of the sectoral employment allocation to the
Research Team:
Philip Murphy (Swansea University), David Blackaby (Swansea University), Melanie Jones (Cardiff University), Victoria Wass, Gerald Makepeace, Alan Felstead (Cardiff University)
Labour Market Implications of Changes in the Public Sector: Public Sector Pay
Pay determination and outcomes in the public sector Data from the Labour Force Survey was used to investigate public sector wage differential in the UK 1994 to 2012. In the first of a set of analyses, three separate sub-periods are considered in detail, each characterise
Research Team:
Philip Murphy (Swansea University), David Blackaby (Swansea University), Melanie Jones (Cardiff University), Victoria Wass, Gerald Makepeace, Alan Felstead (Cardiff University)
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Books and Book Chapters
Unequal Britain at Work
The unadjusted public–private sector pay differential has attracted considerable political interest over many years. It has been used to justify changes to pay-setting arrangements and the imposition of pay restraint on the public sector. However, previous analyses have...
Civil Society | August 2015