Lorna Unwin

Professor Emerita (Vocational Education), Department of Education, Practice and Society, UCL Institute of Education, University College London. Honorary Professorial Research Fellow, School of Environment, Education and Development, University of Manchester.


Education, Practice and Society


Centre for Learning and Life Chances in Knowledge Economies and Societies (LLAKES)


Role in LLAKES

Honorary LLAKES Professorial Fellow

Deputy Director 2008-2012

IRIS profile: https://iris.ucl.ac.uk/iris/browse/profile?upi=LWUNW98

Research Interests

Vocational education and training - policy and practice

Development of occupational expertise in and outside the workplace

The role and organisation of education, training and workplace change in the re-development of City-regions

History of further and technical education in the UK

Recent Outputs and Activities


Unwin, L. (2017) Employer-led In-Work Training and Skill Formation: The Challenges of Multi-Varied and Contingent Phenomena. In C. Warhurst, K. Mayhew, D. Finegold and J. Buchanana (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Skills and Training, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Felstead, A and Unwin, L. (2017) Learning Outside the Formal System - What Learning Happens in the Workplace, and how is it Recognised? Paper commissioned for the  Future of Skills and Lifelong Learning Evidence Review, Foresight, Government Office for ScienceAvailable from: www.gov.uk/go-science

Leonard, P., Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2017) A New Start? Negotiations of age and chrononormativity by older apprentices in England, Ageing and Society (in Press).

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2017) Job Crafting and Identity in Low-Grade Work: How Hospital Porters Redefine the Value of their Work and Expertise, Vocations and Learning (Published online January 2017).

Unwin, L. (2017) From craftsmanship to 3D printing and an ageing workforce - Is vocational education and training (VET) research keeping pace with change as well as continuity in work? In M. Pilz (ed) Vocational Education and Training in Times of Economic Crisis, Dordecht: Springer.

Unwin, L. (2016) Respect, resistance and the educative potential of vocational education: Dewey's enduring relevance for the individual, the workplace, and society. In S. Higgins and F. Coffield (eds) John Dewey's Democracy and Education, London: UCL IOE Press.

Lupton, R., Unwin, L. and Thompson, S. (2016) Further and higher education and skills. In Lupton, R., Burchardt, T., Hills, J., Stewart, K. and Vizard, P. (eds) Social Policy in A Cold Climate, Bristol: Policy Press.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2016) Applying an Apprenticeship Approach to HRD: Why the Concepts of Occupation, Identity and the Organisation of Workplace Learning Still Matter. In H. Shipton, P. Budhwar, P. Sparrow and A. Brown (eds) Human Respource Management, Innovation and Performance, London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Fuller, A., Leonard, P., Unwin, L. and Davey, G. (2015) Does apprenticeship work for adults? Report to the Nuffield Foundation. London: UCL Institute of Education.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2014) Nurturing occupational expertise in the contemporary workplace: an 'apprenticeship turn' in professional learning. In T. Fenwick and M. Nerland (eds) Reconceptualising Professional Learning, London: Routledge.

Bailey, B. and Unwin, L. (2014) Continuity and Change in English Further Education: a century of voluntarism and permissive adaptability, British Journal of Educational Studies, 62(4): 449-464.

Fuller, A., Turbin, J., Unwin, L., Guile, D. and Wintrup, J. (2013) Technician and Intermediate Roles in the Healthcare Sector, London: The Gatsby Foundation.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2013) Apprenticeship and the Concept of Occupation, London: The Gatsby Foundation.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2013) (eds) Contemporary Apprenticeship: International Perspectives on an Evolving Model of Learning, London: Routledge.

James, L. Guile, D. and Unwin, L. (2013) Learning and innovation in the Knowledge-Based Economy: beyond clusters and qualifications, Journal of Education and Work, 26(3): 243-266.

Fuller, A., Rizvi, S. and Unwin, L. (2013) Apprenticeships and Regeneration: the Civic Struggles to Achieve Social and Economic Goals, British Journal of Educational Studies, 61(1): 63-78.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2013) Gender Segregation, Apprenticeship and the Raising of the Participation Age in England: are Young Women at a Disadvantage?, LLAKES Research Paper 44,London: Centre for Learning and Life Chances in Knowledge Economies and Societies.

Unwin, L. (2010) Learning and Working from the MSC to New Labour: young people, skills and employment, National Institute Economic Review, 212: 49-60

James, L., Guile, D. and Unwin, L. (2012) ‘Learning and Innovation in the Knowledge-Based Economy: beyond clusters and qualifications’, Journal of Education and Work, 26(3): 243-266.

Unwin, L. (2012) A critical approach to work: the contribution of work-based learning to lifelong learning. In D.N. Aspin, J. Chapman, K. Evans and R. Bagnall (eds) Second International Handbook of Lifelong Learning, Dordrecht: Springer.

Fuller, A. and Unwin, L. (2012) Banging on the Door of the University: The Complexities of Progression from Apprenticeship and other Vocational Programmes in England, SKOPE Monograph 14, London and Oxford: SKOPE and the Centre for Learning and Life Chances in Knowledge Economies and Societies.

Green, A., Mason, G. and Unwin, L. (2011) Education and Inequality: Introduction, National Institute Economic Review, No.215: R1-R5.