Skills in Business: The Role of Business Strategy, Sectoral Skills Development and Skills Policy
Publication Year: 2015
Subject: Business & Management Skills
“Johnny Sung and David Ashton are two of the leading scholars in the area of skills. This book combines challenging theories with cutting edge research in a way that should bring skills to life for students. I strongly recommend it for anyone researching or studying in this area.”
– Irena Grugulis, Leeds University Business School
“A much needed contribution to the complex debate of how skills can best be utilised to enhance company performance, with particular emphasis on an innovative sectoral approach. It is a model of clarity in its presentation of the authors' conceptual models using a historical narrative as well as comparative case studies in both the UK and Singapore.”
– Bert Clough, Leeds University Business School
Public skills policy in most market economies in the last ...
- Front Matter
- Back Matter
- Subject Index
- Chapter 1: The Challenges Facing Skills Policy in the 21st Century
- Chapter 2: The Long Wait Is Over: Linking Business Strategy to Skills
- Chapter 3: Technical Relations and Skill Levels
- Chapter 4: Interpersonal Relations and Skill Utilisation
- Chapter 5: Skills, Performance and Change
- Chapter 6: A Sectoral Approach to Skills Development and Public Skills Policy
- Chapter 7: Conclusion
[Page ii]To our children:
Bethany Raddon-Sung, Kate Ashton, Dr Heidi Ashton and Wendy Ashton
© Johnny Sung and David Ashton 2015
First published 2015
Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of research or private study, or criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, this publication may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form, or by any means, only with the prior permission in writing of the publishers, or in the case of reprographic reproduction, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside those terms should be sent to the publishers.
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About the Authors
The ideas in this book have had a long gestation period. Over the past decade we have been working together on a variety of projects funded by research councils and government departments and agencies in a number of countries. Most of that research has been involved in case study work with organisations both public and private, which has enabled us to test and refine our ideas. So we have numerous organisational leaders, human resource (HR) directors and industry experts to thank for their time and input into our work. In addition, we have presented the ideas to numerous participants on the postgraduate courses we have taught in the UK, Ireland and Europe, and their inputs, usually as HR professionals, have been very useful. Academically, we have had discussions with many colleagues but would like to acknowledge Phil Brown, Hugh Lauder, Ewart Keep, Francis Green, Geoff Mason and Mark Spilsbury as colleagues with whom we have had longstanding conversations on skills issues over a number of years from which we have greatly benefited.
This book has a strong policy focus that stems from our constant engagement with the policy process at both national and international levels and our conviction that the research process combined with good theory can make a substantial contribution towards more effective policy. In the UK, we would like to acknowledge staff at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills and in Singapore at the Workforce Development Agency, especially Dr Gog Soon Joo who shared with us her idea of ‘institutional logics’ for changing employers’ competitive behavior. We would also like to acknowledge the contribution of anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on the manuscript. At SAGE Publications, we would like to thank Ms Gemma Shields for her excellent editorial support.
Last but not least, we would like to thank our families, who have been so tolerant in allowing us time and space to write this book. In this respect, we would like to thank Dr Arwen Raddon and Maureen Ashton for their constant support and encouragement, without which this project would not have been possible.
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