Professor David N Ashton

Emeritus ProfessorDavid Ashton

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David Ashton was educated at Leicester University where he read Sociology and graduated in 1964. In 2009 he was awarded the degree of Doctor of Letters. He is now an Emeritus Professor at Leicester University and Honorary Professor at Cardiff University. He has also taught at the University of Reading in the UK, the University of Alberta (Canada) and the State University of New York at Buffalo (USA).

In 1986 he founded the Labour Market Studies Group which in 1989 became the Centre for Labour Market Studies. The Centre achieved an international reputation in research in the areas of labour markets, skills and training and for its distance learning provision in the field of training, human resource management, skills and performance.

His initial research into the field of youth employment was funded by a number of agencies including the UK Department of Employment, the ESRC, the Manpower Services Commission and the European Union. His early publications were in the field of youth transitions, unemployment and training in the UK with international comparisons funded by the Canadian High Commission and the EEC. This work developed into the analysis of training and its impact on economic development. Together with Professor Francis Green, and with support from the ESRC, he examined the impact of training on the growth of the Asian Tigers. This subsequently led to his involvement in international work through the International Labour Organisation and the World Bank where he researched the effectiveness national systems of training.

Together with Professor Francis Green he also launched the first of what is now a series UK Skills Surveys of individual skills and competences. With Professor Johnny Sung he has researched extensively into high performance working. His interest in skill formation led to collaboration with Professors Phil Brown and Hugh Lauder where he examined the process of skill formation in multi-national companies and its impact on national systems of education and training.

He is currently exploring the issues of productivity, skills and performance together with Professor Johnny Sung in Singapore. His latest book with Johnny Sung explores the relationship between business strategy, company organisation and skill use and the implication of this for public policy.

He has provided consultancy services for trades unions and private companies, the CIPD and various UK government departments, including the Cabinet Office, BIS and the United Kingdom Commission for Employment and Skills and abroad for government departments in Canada, Singapore, South Africa and Malta. In addition to the ILO he has also provided consultancy services for the EU and the World Bank.

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School of Media, Communication and Sociology

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T: +44(0)116 252 3863

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T: 0116 252 3755

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T: +44(0)116 252 2785

University of Leicester
Bankfield House
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United Kingdom

University of Leicester
107-111 Princess Road East
United Kingdom

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