Interrogating theoretical and empirical approaches to employability in different global regions


This special issue expands the scope of a panel presentation at the Society for Research into Higher Education Annual Conference 2019 and makes two identified contributions to the field. First, drawing from existing literature, this introductory paper proposes three categorisations of employability as: outcomes approach, process approach and conceptual approaches. This moves beyond normative conceptualisation of employability from mostly the outcomes approach. The applicability of the categorisation is further enumerated by the diversity of contributions in this special issue that highlights (a) the complexity in the field and (b) the interrelatedness of the categories. Second, the special issue puts together a rarely combined collection of global perspectives on conceptualisations of employability, and insights from research on little studied groups in Western and non‐Western contexts (the UK, Portugal, Australia, the Indo‐Pacific Region, Germany, Kenya and Kazakhstan). The papers, therefore, illustrate the need to widen our scope of understanding employability beyond current dominant perspectives. The broadening that is required in employability discourses is further needed in view of unprecedented disruption brought on higher education during the COVID‐19 pandemic. This suggests the need to rethink our conceptualisations of employability amidst uncertainty and potential disruption to the future of work.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities > Centre for Critical Inquiry into Society and Culture (CCISC)
College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School > Operations & Information Management
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities
Additional Information: © 2021 The Authors. Higher Education Quarterly published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
Uncontrolled Keywords: New Colombo Plan (NCP),critical realist perspectives,employability,higher education,international scholarships,internationalisation,Education
Publication ISSN: 1468-2273
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2024 07:10
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2021 09:31
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Related URLs: https://onlinel ... 1111/hequ.12345 (Publisher URL)
http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2021-10
Published Online Date: 2021-07-08
Accepted Date: 2021-06-10
Authors: Fakunle, Omolabake
Higson, Helen (ORCID Profile 0000-0003-3433-2823)


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