Dr George Karl Ackers is a senior lecturer in sociology at the University of Portsmouth which he joined in 2013, before this he studied Sociology at Roehampton University, followed by an MA in Social Policy from the University of Nottingham. Completed in 2017 His PhD is on the sociology of work and entitled, ‘De-industrialisation and Masculine Work Identity in the Former Naval Repair Community of Medway, Kent’. This study examines the impact of de-industrialisation on masculine work identity for generations of Medway men.
George's intellectual interests centre on the sociology of work and how processes such as deindustrialisation affect people’s working lives, sense of identity and community. His PhD thesis stressed skilled men's ability to carefully adapt to and navigate the transition from industrial to post-industrial work. A topic he published on in the journal article: George Karl Ackers (2014): Rethinking deindustrialisation and male career crisis, British Journal of Guidance & Counselling. He also explores the continued significance of craft as a means for men to understand both their paid and domestic work as a meaningful and unified career in his recent paper: George Karl Ackers (2018) Craft as work-life unity: the careers of skilled working class men and their sons and grandsons after deindustrialisation, Gender, Work & Organization. He also has a soon to be publish paper in Current Sociology entitled: The ‘dual tension’ created by negotiating upward social mobility and habitus: A generational study of skilled working-class men, their sons, and grandsons following Deindustrialization. This paper contributes to the emerging qualitative research framework that seeks to understand the personal tensions social mobility creates for individuals.
George is currently starting a new study of female trade workers who lost their jobs at the Portsmouth Dockyard as a result of deindustrialisation. Entitled: Women, men and deindustrialisation: an intergenerational study of trade workers from naval repair families in the south of England, as funded by a BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants 2018-19. This research aims to produce the first study of the impact that deindustrialisation has had on female workers. George is also first supervisor to Hannah Green PhD project on corporate employment and people’s dissatisfaction with, and wellbeing within, current capitalist society as is funded by the (ESRC South Coast Doctoral Training Partnership Studentship in the Citizenship, Governance and Security Pathway). George also has research interests and would be happy to hear from postgraduate students interested in studying the topics of:
• work and employment
• masculinities and identity
• age, intergenerational research and oral histories
• craft and D.I.Y