flexible work and inflexible care: Opportunities and challenges for an inclusive workforce

Our 2024 Diversity at Work one-day workshop explored the connections between economics and the opportunities and challenges for an inclusive workforce.

In partnership with:

the details

Work is changing rapidly. To remain inclusive, businesses must further adapt to the changing realities of family life. Our Diversity at Work workshop will examine the latest economic research and business practices on promoting inclusive work, managing a flexible workforce, creating gender-inclusive supply chains and encouraging supportive fatherhood.

The world’s finest labour economists, many of whom are at Oxford, will engage in conversations and debates with business and policy leaders from around the world in order to stimulate new ideas for building inclusive workplaces.

The audience for this workshop is intentionally wide; it is aimed at academics from across social sciences and humanities, as well as business professionals from across different industries and policy experts from government and the third sector.

Location: St Catherine’s College, Oxford

Date: Monday 11 March 2024

Time: 09:00 – 18:00

Cost: £100

watch the keynote talk


Watch the fantastic keynote lecture from Claudia Olivetti on ‘Family, Labour Markets, and Policy.’

Q5 partners: write up of the day

OUBEP Steering Committee member Claire Hamlin,  Director of Purpose and Sustainability at Q5 Partners, and Johanna Scheutzow, Senior Consultant at Q5 Partners, shared key learning and insights from the day. Download the PDF of their write-up here.

Watch the fantastic keynote lecture from Claudia Olivetti on ‘Family, Labour Markets, and Policy.’

Companies should focus on creating opportunities for collaboration as part of their hybrid working strategy, rather than solely focusing on return-to-office policies driven by assumptions about productivity.

Claire Hamlin

Director of Purpose and Sustainability, Q5 Partners

the schedule

8:30 – 8:55 Breakfast reception

8:55  Opening remarks – Alex Teytemboym, OUBEP Academic Director

9:00 – 9:30 Barbara Petrongolo: ‘Gender in firms’ 


   Session: Gender: Definition and key trends

9:40 – 10:00 Alison Andrew: ‘Women and Men at Work’

10:00 – 10:20 Morten Thomsen: ‘Transgender populations in the labour market and beyond’ 


   Session: Encouraging supportive fatherhood

10:30 – 10:50 Hyejin Ku: ‘Implicit tournament in the workplace’                      

10:50 – 11:10 Alexia Delfino: ‘Overcoming Gender Stereotypes in Workforce Recruitment’


   Session: Innovations in work and care

11:30 – 11:50 Ekaterina Hertog: ‘Using digital monitoring technologies in childcare’ 

11:50 – 12:10 Diva Dhar: ‘Time to care: Gates Foundation’s learning agenda on care and women’s work’ 


   Session: Managing the flexible workforce

12:20 – 12:40 Lily Rodel: ‘Parents in the hybrid workplace: gender and work in the UK tech sector’                     

12:40 – 13:00 Nikhil Datta: ‘The supply and demand for zero hour contracts’                    


  Session: Dealing with harassment and trauma

14:20 – 14:40 Abi Adams-Prassl: ‘The costs of sexual harassment’                      

 14:40 – 15:00 Mathias Jensen: ‘Effects of parental death’


15:20 – 16:20 Panel discussion: Managing tradeoffs between work and care in practice:  insights from charities, business, and policy.
                     with Vincent Barnes, Duro Oye, Tina Seymour & Ivona Hideg
                     Moderated by Kate Tojeiro


16:30 – 17:30 Keynote talk 
                     ‘Family, labour markets, and policy’
                     Claudia Olivetti

17:30 – 18:30 Drinks reception


keynote speaker



Claudia Olivetti is the George J. Records 1956 Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College and the co-director of the NBER Working Group on “Gender in the Economy.”

Her research focuses on women in the labor market including wages, hours, and careers and on intergenerational mobility and marriage institutions in historical perspective. She has worked on the baby boom and maternal health and on historical and comparative perspectives on the gender gap.

Prior to joining Dartmouth College, Olivetti was on the faculty at Boston College and Boston University, and a Fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies at Harvard University in 2005.

Olivetti’s work has been published in the top economics journals, including the American Economic Review, the Journal of Political Economy, the Review of Economic Studies and the Quarterly Journal of Economics.



Barbara Petrongolo is a Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford and a Professorial Fellow at Nuffield College. She is Director of the CEPR Labour Economics Programme and Research Associate at the Centre for Economic Performance of the London School of Economics.

She previously held positions at Queen Mary University of London, the London School of Economics, the Paris School of Economics and the University of Carlos III (Madrid). She is currently managing co-editor of the Economic Journal. Her primary research interests are in labour economics. She has worked extensively on the performance of labour markets with job search frictions, with applications to unemployment dynamics, welfare policy and interdependencies across local labour markets.

Her work also researches the causes of gender inequalities in labour market outcomes, in a historical perspective and across countries, with emphasis on the role of employment selection mechanisms, structural transformation, and interactions within the household.



Abi adams-prassl

Abi is the Nuffield Professor of Economics and Associate Head of the Department of Economics at the University of Oxford.

Abi is a Labour and Applied Microeconomist with research interests across three main areas: (i) the economic causes and consequences of gender-based violence; (ii) the supply of, and demand for, job flexibility; (iii) the identification of behavioural models of decision-making in observational data or through strategic survey instruments.

Abi is keen to maximise the impact of economic research in wider society. Abi was awarded the UK Economic and Social Research Council Outstanding Impact in Public Policy Prize and the O2RB Impact Prize.



Mathias is a Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Economics, University of Oxford, and a Non-Stipendiary Research Fellow at Nuffield College. His research agenda centres on inequalities in the labour market.

Currently, Mathias studies labour market inequalities from three distinct perspectives. First, in the roles of gender and family dynamics in the labour market.  Second, he explores the economic effects of parental death on children. Third, Mathias studies the outcomes of children of immigrants relative to the children of locals. 

With these research projects, Mathias aims to contribute to a nuanced understanding of labour market dynamics, earnings disparities, familial influences, and the socio-economic trajectories of diverse populations.


hamish low

Hamish is the James Meade Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford and a Professorial Fellow at Nuffield College. He is also a Research Fellow at the Institute for Fiscal Studies. Hamish joined the Department of Economics in 2018 from the University of Cambridge, where he was a Professor of Economics and Fellow of Trinity College, and where he had been a member of the Faculty of Economics since 1998. Hamish holds a PhD in Economics from University College London, and an MPhil in Economics and a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Oxford.

Hamish’s research agenda is focused on three connected sets of issues: first, what sort of uncertainty do individuals face over their life-times; second, how do individuals respond to this uncertainty; and third, what is the role of government, especially through social insurance, in mitigating this uncertainty. The uncertainty that individuals face is partly due to economic risks, such as to their future wages or employment, to the value of their assets, such as housing and pensions, and economy-wide risks such as of recessions or financial contractions. Individuals also face risks to their health and to family structure, and these risks often have economic implications, such as when health shocks mean individuals are unable to work. Hamish’s work has been published in leading economic journals including the American Economic Review and Econometrica.



alison andrew

Alison is an Associate Professor at the Department of Economics and Tutorial Fellow at Trinity College. She is a development and labor economist, with research interests in the economics of gender, marriage and education. Her current work focuses on India, Colombia and the UK.


kate tojeiro

Kate Tojeiro an Executive Coach, author and media contributor with over 15 years experience working with FTSE 100, Fortune 500 and cutting-edge start-ups. In her coaching practice, both one-on-one and in groups, she mixes conventional and unconventional approaches, underpinned by latest in neuroscience. It’s her mission to help the leaders of today, and tomorrow, overcome fear, embrace their humanity and live to their fullest potential.

A regular fixture on BBC radio and a respected voice across the media, Kate works with leaders, teams and the next generation of rising stars.

She is an associate faculty member of the Cambridge University Judge Business School and also a Fellow of the RSA.



Diva is a Non Resident Fellow at the Oxford Martin School program on the Future of Development, and Deputy Director of Women’s Economic Empowerment at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Diva leads the foundation’s global strategy and portfolio on strengthening data architecture and deepening research and evidence for women’s economic empowerment programming and policymaking.

Prior to joining the Gender Equality team in 2019, Diva anchored research and evaluation portfolios for the foundation on nutrition, digital, youth and gender in India. Diva has worked for over 15 years in public policy research and design, with a focus on gender, youth and development. Diva started her career working for the Indian government’s Planning Commission and has worked in 10 countries for global non-profit organization such as J-PAL, Innovations for Poverty Action and the World Bank. 

Diva holds a Ph.D. in Public Policy from the University of Oxford. She has a Master’s in International and Development Economics from Yale University and a B.A. in Economics and International Relations from Mount Holyoke College.


ekaterina hertog

Ekaterina is an Associate Professor in AI and Society and the Oxford Internet Institute. Ekaterina’s research interests lie at the intersection of digital sociology and family sociology. She leads the ESRC-funded DomesticAI project that scopes new technologies’ potential to free up time now locked into unpaid domestic labour and measures how willing people are to introduce these technologies into their private lives.

Hertog’s earlier study of never-married single mothers in Japan that provides an in-depth analysis of Japanese women’s decision-making on childbearing issues and the related value systems was published as a book by Stanford University Press titled Tough Choices: Bearing an Illegitimate Child in Contemporary Japan.

Her other research includes analyses of gender differences in time use in East Asia and an investigation of digital dating records from one of Japan’s largest matchmakers to scrutinise partner search processes, identifying the social factors that drive individual success and failure on the Japanese marriage market. She has published in journals such as the Journal of Marriage and Family, Demographic Research, and PLOS ONE.


Hyejin ku

Hyejin Ku is Associate Professor of Economics at University College London and Deputy Director of the Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM). She received her PhD in Economics from Cornell University, USA.

Her research interests are in labour economics and applied microeconomics. Her recent work has focused on the effects of incentive schemes and workplace policies on productivity, career progression and inequality, and on the economics of immigration. More recently, she has been working on issues related to knowledge creation and technology adoption in both historical and contemporary contexts.


lily rodel

Lily is a DPhil student on the Internet, Communication, and Social Sciences programme at the Oxford Internet Institute. Her research focuses on gender inequality and remote work, exploring the experience of working remotely, the perception of remote workers in general, as well as the specific experiences of women in remote work.

Lily’s background is in anthropology. She holds a BA in Social Anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies and an MSc in Digital Anthropology from University College London.


nikhil datta

Nikhil is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick and a research associate at the Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics. Nikhil received his PhD from University College London in June 2022.

Nikhil is an applied micro economist, with an interest in labour and urban economics. His particular interests are in minimum wages, monopsony power, alternative work arrangements and the housing market. He has also done extensive policy work on the economic impacts of Brexit.


Alexia Delfino

Alexia Delfino is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at Bocconi University, Milan. She received her PhD in Economics from the London School of Economics. She is an applied micro-economist with interests in organisations, labour and gender economics. As part of her research, she collaborates with firms in both the private and public sector to find questions of interest for both academics and organisational partners. 


Morten Thomsen

Morten Thomsen is a DPhil student and Clarendon Scholar at the Department of Sociology and Worcester College, University of Oxford.

Morten specialises in the quantitative assessment of sexual and gender minority individual’s life trajectories, applying multi-dimensional strategies to observe minority groups otherwise ‘invisible’ in population-level data. He is especially interested in understanding how gendered dynamics contribute to inequalities in health, victimisation, and on the labour market.

Morten’s current research focus on transgender demographics. With this, his aim is to inform and depolarise the often ill-informed and toxic discussion surrounding transgender lives and experiences.


duro oye

Duro Oye is the CEO and founder of the multi award winning, social enterprise Youth Empowerment Organisation 20/20 Change, most recently reimagined as 20/20 Levels charity.

Since its inception in 2013 the organisation has gone on to empower over 1700 young people from Black and Ethnic minority backgrounds as well as those from low socio-economic backgrounds to find not only themselves but forge a path for their futures in careers and entrepreneurships through a variety of programmes.

Duro has been a long-term champion for Social Impact and as the co-founder and CEO of 20/20 Levels is willing to take on the risk and effort to create positive changes in society through his initiatives. The new business model will incorporate business development mentorships for budding social entrepreneurs as well as keep the core values of the business in personal professional development.

Duro’s main drive for the future is to ensure that 20/20 Levels has the ability to impact 1 billion lives across the globe in the social impact space, if those lives are impacted, the issues that are currently faced will be a thing of the past. Through this programme the overall aim is to empower the young people to do for self.

Duro also serves as an active contributor to various boards such as: Chair of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee at Charity People; DE&I Impact Champion at The Conduit London; trustee for Acumen Academy UK and Ambassador for the Home Grown Club.

Duro has been an advocate for change and empowerment throughout his life. Since receiving his diploma from London Met film school in Documentary Filmmaking. He has gone on to producing impactful documentaries such as:‘247365 Change’;-‘County lines: Teenage Drug Runners’ in collaboration with the BBC, and ‘Gangland Season 1 & 2’ with Channel 5. 


tina seymour

Tina is the Chief Executive of the Charity Hope for Tomorrow. Hope for Tomorrow is dedicated to creating new spaces for cancer services to be delivered faster, to more patients, in more convenient locations and currently operates a fleet of mobile cancer care units across England.

She has a background in local government but became a specialist in policy and performance, democracy and elections. She has worked on numerous elections in the role of deputy returning officer (local, parliamentary and European elections). Her policy background gave her an overview of many areas of working,. She is passionate about understanding the deprivation levels in the UK and seeing how policies could change the lives of citizens who were most impacted, especially in rural areas.

Tina did her Master of Science in Management, focused on Women in Management and the glass ceiling.


Vincent barnes

Vincent has enjoyed a variety of roles across his 24-year P&G career, gaining expertise across key areas of P&G’s Commercial business in several geographies. From leading the team driving P&G sales within Convenience and Wholesale channels, setting the commercial strategy at a Global level for P&G’s haircare portfolio to more recent leadership of P&G’s Fabric, Baby and Professional Care business in Northern Europe, Vincent recognises the importance of focusing on people development in order to drive the business forward.

His latest role as P&G’s Tesco Global Vice President offers him the chance to help shape the partnership between P&G and one of Europe’s biggest retailers to grow the businesses together. As a father of a young family, Vincent understands the pressures of juggling a demanding career with shared parental commitments and has recently taken on the role of P&G Northern Europe’s Gender Equality Lead Team Sponsor, giving him the opportunity to listen to the needs of the individuals in the organisation in order to create an inclusive, gender-equal environment within P&G, whilst advocating for gender and intersectional equality in workplaces everywhere.


Ivona Hideg

Ivona’s main program of research includes workplace equity, diversity, and inclusion(EDI). In her work, she focuses on gender, but also examines issues surrounding race, ethnicity, language and accent including intersection of various identities that we all hold.

Ivona’s work has provided important insights for leaders, organisations and governments on how to effectively manage and leverage an ever increasing diverse workforce to thrive in today’s global economy. Importantly, her work has provided insights into how to do so in a socially responsible way by promoting and increasing equity, diversity and inclusion in the workplace.



The Economics of Intersectionality

Watch Professor Adia Wingfield’s Keynote Lecture from our 2023 Diversity Day.

the history

The history of OUBEP is in many ways the history of changing social attitudes towards business in Britain over the past 70 years.

OUBEP was founded by a group of business leaders during the period following the Second World War – a time of immense political, economic and societal change – “…to bring the ‘leaders of tomorrow’ from the public and private sectors together, to better understand modern economic thinking, and therefore the bigger picture in which they would one day operate.”

Over the last 70 years, OUBEP has evolved and adapted to meet the requirements of the modern world. However, to this day it maintains its foundational intent to bring together a gathering of bright minds to better understand and discuss the impact of the global economy, and to ultimately benefit business and society.