Ödül Bozkurt is Senior Lecturer at the University of Sussex Business School where she is also the Director of the Future of Work Research Centre and the Director of International Affairs. She is a sociologist of work and obtained her PhD at the University of California at Los Angeles in 2006. Over the past five years Ödül has been carrying out research about the organization and experiences of work and employment in the classic motoring sector in the UK. She is interested in how the training and skills development offer in the sector can be expanded and improved, how new generations of workers can be attracted to heritage sectors in general and classic motoring in particular, and how a skilled workforce can be ensured high quality work in a thriving sector going forward. She has already published an academic article about what draws trainees to class car restoration training and has been collecting data on the employment experiences of sector’s print media workers. She has also been following a group of apprentices since Summer 2018, as they continue their training with the Heritage Skills Academy.
In collaborating wtih the AoHE Ödül would like to develop our understanding of the skills base, use and development in heritage engineering. Most immediately, she plans to work on a grant application proposal to the Nuffield Foundation that would allow her to investigate both the scale of skills and training issues through survey-based methods and the processes whereby working in heritage motoring appears, or fails to appear, as a viable career path for young learners through interview and observation-based methods. A particular focus would be on students on disadvantaged backgrounds and how they can be supported in developing pathways into “decent work” in heritage engineering. Nuffield Foundation is a charitable trust that aims to advance educational opportunity and social well-being in the UK. The grant application is for a scheme that has education as a priority area, with the development of skills and capabilities in a changing world, and young people’s pathways from training to work being two highlighted themes.
Ödül is keen to develop this proposal in close cooperation with sector stakeholders, offering her academic know-how to address real-life problems, but also to pursue other opportunities to develop our knowledge of the training and employment related issues in heritage engineering through other initiatives. She remains committed to the recognition and appreciation of heritage skills in a digital age!
Thank you for getting involved and thanks for all the the work you have undertaken thus far.