John holds a PhD from Cornell University and both a B.Comm. (Hons.) and an MBA from the University of Manitoba. His main interest is in labour and employment, with a focus on the nature of the employment relation under alternative institutional conditions and its implications for employer practices and ultimately societal outcomes. He has a particular interest in the realization of democratic values at work, both as an ideal and as a measure of the democratic quality of societies.

John’s work has appeared most often in the British Journal of Industrial Relations (LSE), the Industrial and Labor Relations Review (Cornell), and Industrial Relations (Berkeley). However, it has been published in numerous additional outlets, including, in recent years, the American Sociological Review, the Queen’s Law Journal, and the Human Resource Management Journal.
John has also served in a number of professional capacities, ranging from chief editor of the British Journal of Industrial Relations, to president of the Canadian Industrial Relations Association, to chair of the Minimum Wage Board of Manitoba, to departmental representative in the University of Manitoba Faculty Association.
John’s text, Industrial Relations, the Economy, and Society, is now in its 5th edition. This text adopts a critical approach to the study of industrial relations, and advocates substantial reforms to Canadian labour and employment laws. He believes that these reforms may become increasingly feasible as the era of global neoliberalism comes to an end, but that much may depend on the intellectual quality of business practitioners and ultimately of business school education. He is passionate about the need to strengthen the latter.

Teaching Interests

  • Labour and Employment Relations
  • Comparative Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management
  • Management and Capitalism

Research and Academic Interests

Employment Practices, High Performance Work Systems, the Quality of Employment, Labour Movements, Workplace Representation Systems, Industrial Conflict, Labour Law and Policy, Cross-National Historical/Institutional Differences (in each of the preceding), Political Economy, Social Theory, Philosophy of Science, Management Theory, Business School Pedagogy.