Dean Alexander Colvin launched the podcast "WORK" to discuss the future of labor and employment.

December 10, 2019

ILR Dean Delves Into World of Work in New Podcast

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Podcast lovers need look no further: In late October, the Dean of the School of Industrial and Labor Relations Alex Colvin launched a podcast called “WORK! Exploring the Future of Work, Labor and Employment.” In each episode, Colvin hosts a discussion with a guest on intriguing or contentious topics related to labor.

According to Colvin, he hopes to critically examine the workplace — part of ILR’s mission.

“So it’s a way to get out some of the things we’re doing around the future of work and to connect to people in the field,” Colvin said. “ILR works in a relatively applied area so there’s a lot of interesting things going on in the world of work that connects to things we’re doing research about and so this is a way to increase our impacts and to engage what’s going on.”

Past guests have included Katrina Nobles, director for programs for ILR’s Scheinman Institute on Conflict Resolution, and Susanne Bruyèree, director of the Yang Tan Institute on Employment and Disability, who touched on topics like LGBTQ+ worker rights and neurodiversity inclusiveness at work.

The podcast touches on a wide range of topics, and according to Colvin, one of the show’s most remarkable guests so far has been Buffalo assemblyman Sean Ryan (D-N.Y.) — who joined the dean to discuss the economic transformation happening in the once-depressed Western New York city.

“It was really good conversation about how it has evolved and we also talked about some of ILR’s deep connection in the Buffalo area,” Colvin said. “We have the high roads engagement learning program for our students there. That’s been a big success so it was really interesting to kind of delve into that.”

Colvin’s own research and teaching focuses on employment dispute resolution, with a particular emphasis on procedures in nonunion workplaces and the impact of the legal environment on organizations. He has published articles in journals such as Industrial & Labor Relations Review, Industrial Relations, British Journal of Industrial Relations, Personnel Psychology, Relations Industrielles, the Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution and the Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy.

In the future, Colvin hopes to include a diverse range of voices to continue producing a podcast that informs a broad audience about contemporary workplace issues while also connecting to ILR alumni.

“So I have a couple lined up of interesting union leaders in January … there’s definitely more sort of academic, thought leaders, practitioners, policymakers, a really broad range of people hopefully,” Colvin said.

Colvin’s first two published episodes are available on Apple Podcasts and Youtube.