Here is a brief interview with Dr. de Laat about her new position.
Can you share a few thoughts about your new role?
As of July, I will be an Assistant Professor of Organization and Human Behaviour at the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business. Here, I will apply my sociological lens to courses on organizational behaviour, and undergraduate courses that equip students for work life (through teaching about professional communication and how to build a resume, for example).
How will this merge/diverge from the research you are currently doing?
As an Assistant Professor of Organization and Human Behaviour, one of my core research and teaching goals is to critically examine how the social organization of work influences worker well-being, and how this varies on the basis of gender, parental status, and race/ethnicity to name but a few examples. This aspect of my research program is a direct extension of my ongoing work with members of the RC/W team (Andrea Doucet, Alyssa Gerhardt, and Rachel McLay), as we’re in the process of examining the influence of workplace policies on fathers’ engagement in childcare and housework responsibilities.
I also have ongoing projects that examine (a) the way diversity is valuated in creative industries and how this impacts the inclusion of Indigenous, Black, and people of colour creative workers, and (b) how the social organization of work in technology sectors influences employees’ perceptions and use of flexible work policies. A major focus of the Stratford School is anticipating the role of digitalization and technological innovation in the economy writ large, and my ongoing research on creative industries and technology sectors contributes to this mission, as they are two sectors that are heavily influenced by, as well as influences on, digitalization.
How will you stay engaged in the RC/W’s research?
I am lucky to be in the midst of two exciting research collaborations with the RC/W members that will continue well into my new role at the University of Waterloo.