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Professor Shireen Kanji
Professor - Human Resource Management

Eastern Gateway 202h


My research focus is on inequality in the workplace and in the home and how inequalities relate to demographic issues.

I am particularly interested in gender inequality in organisations, working hours of men and women, the work-family interface, performance appraisal, career choices, and wellbeing. My research is situated where gender, work and social inequality intersect. 

Parents’ experiences at work. My research has examined, firstly, women’s participation and exit from work. Secondly, male breadwinners' working hours preferences and actual hours of work. Thirdly, the impact that the care grandparents provide to grandchildren has on the labour force participation of mothers in the UK.

Occupations. I have studied the occupational aspirations of younger workers in relation to the gender mix of occupations and gendered self-concepts in mathematics, the long-lasting impact of precarious work on the wellbeing of younger workers in Germany. Research on occupations and inequality is based on women scientists in the pharmaceutical industry in Switzerland and women’s changing occupational status in China (conducted for the Asian Development Bank).

Current research. The differential positioning of men and women in self-employment. The exploration of the working hours and paid work participation of older men and women in Europe. The mental load of organising work and care.

My work has been widely reported in national and international media in The FInancial Times, The Times, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Wirtschaftswoche, Time Magazine, The Daily Express, ITV News and BBC News. I have appearedtwice on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and on the BBC World Service.

I have undertaken consultancy work for international organisations. For example I was involved in an OECD project on how the school to work transition in Switzerland is gendered, an Asian Development Bank research project on women’s changing occupational status in China and several DFID projects on poverty in Russia.

I am a Council Member of the British Society for Population Studies

I was a member of the editorial team of Work, Employment and Society from 2010-2013. I am currently on the Editorial Board of Industrial Relations Journal. I joined Brunel Business School in 2019, having previously held posts at the University of Birmingham, University of Leicester, Basel University and the University of Cambridge. I have taught courses on Leadership, Human Resource Management, Statistical Modelling, Research Methods, International Human Resource Management and Gender and Employment. I designed and tuaght a module on ethics, power and inequality in artificial intelligence in Brunel's new Masters in AI Strategy.

Prior to working in academia, I had a career in international finance

Newest selected publications

Fraher, AL., Kanji, S. and Branicki, LJ. (2024) '“Keeping the Queen’s Peace”: A Sociomaterial Study of Police and Guns in a “Mangle of Risk”'. Information and Organization, 34 (2). pp. 1 - 12. ISSN: 1471-7727 Open Access Link

Journal article

Kanji, S. and Vershinina, N. (2024) 'Gendered transitions to self-employment and business ownership: a linked-lives perspective'. Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, 0 (ahead of print). pp. 1 - 18. ISSN: 0898-5626 Open Access Link

Journal article

Kanji, S., Carmichael, F., Darko, C., Egyei, R. and Vasilakos, N. (2023) 'The impact of early marriage on the life satisfaction, education and subjective health of young women in India: A longitudinal analysis'. Journal of Development Studies, 60 (5). pp. 705 - 723. ISSN: 0022-0388 Open Access Link

Journal article

Carmichael, F., Darko, C., Kanji, S. and Vasilakos, N. (2022) 'The Contribution of Girls’ Longer Hours in Unpaid Work to Gender Gaps in Early Adult Employment: Evidence from Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam'. Feminist Economics, 29 (1). pp. 1 - 37. ISSN: 1354-5701 Open Access Link

Journal article

Carmichael, F., Darko, CK., Kanji, S. and Vasilakos, N. (2022) 'School closures and educational attainment in Ethiopia: Can extra classes help children to catch up?'. British Educational Research Journal, 48 (4). pp. 640 - 664. ISSN: 0141-1926 Open Access Link

Journal article
More publications(21)