Employment outcomes and plant closure in a post-industrial city:an analysis of the labour market studies of MG Rover workers three years on


This paper examines how the loss of 6300 jobs from the closure of MG Rover (MGR) in the city of Birmingham (UK) in April 2005 affected the employment trajectories of ex-workers, in the context of wider structural change and efforts at urban renewal. The paper presents an analysis of a longitudinal survey of 300 ex-MGR workers, and examines to what extent the state of local labour markets and workers’ geographical mobility—as well as the effectiveness of the immediate policy response and longer-term local economic strategies—may have helped to balance the impacts of personal attributes associated with workers’ employability and their reabsorption into the labour markets. It is found that the relative buoyancy of the local economy, the success of longer-run efforts at diversification and a strong policy response and retraining initiative helped many disadvantaged workers to find new jobs in the medium term. However, the paper also highlights the unequal employment outcomes and trajectories that many lesser-skilled workers faced. It explores the policy issues arising from such closures and their aftermath, such as the need to co-ordinate responses, to retain institutional capacity, to offer high-quality training and education resources to workers and, where possible, to slow down such closure processes to enable skills to be retained and reused within the local economy.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0042098011415438
Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School > Economics, Finance & Entrepreneurship
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities > Aston Centre for Europe
College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
Publication ISSN: 1360-063X
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2023 09:40
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2013 08:21
Full Text Link: http://usj.sage ... ntent/49/7/1595
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PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2012-05
Published Online Date: 2011-08-08
Authors: Bailey, David (ORCID Profile 0000-0002-1956-0556)
Chapain, Caroline
de Ruyter, Alex



Version: Accepted Version

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