Dr Patrick McGovern

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Dr McGovern, Reader, joined the LSE in 1996 from Aston University, Birmingham, where he was a lecturer in sociology. During 2006-07 he held a Leverhulme Fellowship in the Department of Sociology at Princeton University. He holds a doctorate from Oxford University and First Class degrees in Sociology (BSc) and Industrial Relations (MSc) from University College, Dublin.

Pat specialises in two areas: economic sociology, especially the sociology of work and labour markets, and international migration. In relation to the sociology of work, he is examining conceptual and theoretical problems within the ‘critical’/Marxist and rational choice traditions. His migration research includes an innovative, multi-disciplinary comparative project on immigration policy with colleagues from the Universities of Amsterdam, Harvard, Luxembourg, and Sydney, and at the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin fur Sozialforschung (WZB) in Berlin. This project, which is based on the creation of database of national immigration policies, will develop measures of the relative restrictiveness of government controls relating to economic, family and humanitarian migration: http://projects.iq.harvard.edu/impala/home|.

His most recent book, Market, Class, and Employment (OUP), challenges much of the received wisdom about the world of work, including claims concerning the marketization of the employment relationship, the decline of class-based forms of inequality, and the individualization of employment relations. The empirical research, which was based on two major ESRC-Funded Future of Work grants, was the result of eight years of collaborative work with colleagues from the University of Oxford, Royal Holloway (University of London) and the Policy Studies Institute.

Dr McGovern’s teaching includes graduate and undergraduate courses in the sociology of work and a graduate seminar in international migration which is part of the LSE’s new Masters in International Migration and Public Policy.

Pat has served on the editorial boards of the British Journal of Industrial Relations, The British Journal of Sociology and Work, Employment & Society.


Selected Publications


McGovern Market Class|Market, Class, and Employment (with Stephen Hill, Colin Mills, and Michael White). Oxford University Press, 2007.

Click on image right for book details.






HRMTechMNCImageHRM, Technical Workers and the Multinational Corporation
London: Routledge, 1998.






Gest, Justin and Boucher, Anna and Challen, Suzanna and Burgoon, Brian and Thielemann, Eiko R. and Beine, Michel and McGovern, Patrick and Crock, Mary and Rapoport, Hillel and Hiscox, Michael (2014) Measuring and comparing immigration, asylum and naturalization policies across countries: challenges and solutions| Global Policy Journal, 5 (3). 261-274. ISSN 1758-5880

McGovern, Patrick (2014) Contradictions at work: a critical review| Sociology, 48 (1). 20-37. ISSN 0038-0385

McGovern, Patrick, (2013) ‘The Experience of Work in Comparative Perspective’ in Carola Frege and John Kelly (eds) Comparative Employment Relations in the Global Economy, London: Routledge 978-0415686631

Inequalities in the (De-)Commodification of Labour: immigration, the nation state, and labour market stratification.’|Sociology Compass, 6 (6). (2012) pp. 485-498. ISSN 1751-9020

Richard Hyman: Marxism, Trade Unionism and Comparative Employment Relations’ |Frege, Carola M. and Kelly, John and McGovern, Patrick British Journal of Industrial Relations, 49 (2). (2011) pp. 209-230. ISSN 0007-1080

The Young Lipset on the Iron Law of Oligarchy: A Taste of Things to Come.’ British Journal of Sociology, 61 (s1). (2010) pp. 29-42. ISSN 0007-1315|’ , 61 (s1). (2010) pp. 29-42. ISSN 0007-1315

Will the Economic Downturn Alter Current Work-life Strategies? The Debate on Work-life Balance is Still in its Infancy.’ Personalführung, 2. (2009) pp. 40-45. ISSN 1430-5658 |’ , 2. (2009) pp. 40-45. ISSN 1430-5658

Immigration, Labour Markets and Employment Relations: Problems and Prospects.’ British Journal of industrial relations, 45 (2). (2007) pp. 217-235. ISSN 0007-1080 |’ , 45 (2). (2007) pp. 217-235. ISSN 0007-1080

Bad Jobs in Britain: Non-standard Employment and Job Quality.’ McGovern, Patrick and Smeaton, Deborah and Hill, Stephen (2004) Work & Occupations, 31 (2). (2004) pp. 225-249. ISSN 0730-8884.|’ McGovern, Patrick and Smeaton, Deborah and Hill, Stephen (2004) , 31 (2). (2004) pp. 225-249. ISSN 0730-8884.

"High-Performance" Management Practices, Working Hours and Work-life Balance.’ White, Michael and Hill, Stephen and McGovern, Patrick and Mills, Colin and Smeaton, Deborah British Journal of Industrial Relations, 41 (2). (2003) pp. 175-195. ISSN 0007-1080|’ White, Michael and Hill, Stephen and McGovern, Patrick and Mills, Colin and Smeaton, Deborah , 41 (2). (2003) pp. 175-195. ISSN 0007-1080

Rational Choice Theory, The "New Economic Sociology" and Functionalism.’ Work, Employment & Society, 17 (4). (2003) pp. 747-756. ISSN 0950-0170|’ , 17 (4). (2003) pp. 747-756. ISSN 0950-0170

Globalization or Internationalization? Foreign Footballers in the English League, 1946-1995.’ Sociology, 36 (1). (2002) pp. 23-42. ISSN 0038-0385|’ , 36 (1). (2002) pp. 23-42. ISSN 0038-0385


Dr Pat McGovern