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Posted at: Jul 11, 2018, 12:11 AM; last updated: Jul 11, 2018, 12:11 AM (IST)SUBJECT MATTER: LABOUR STUDIES

A bright future demands some labour

Anmol Nath Bali

Labour studies deals in labour laws and social welfare. It is a combination of concepts and theories of several subjects — economics, law, political science and sociology. The subject focuses on labour-related issues in the country, their history and what can be done for the economic welfare of this mostly unorganised sector. 

Why labour studies?

India is a developing nation, striving for even development across all sections. However, equal development seems like a distant dream till our labour class is elevated. These courses, as a part of labour studies, may help youngsters understand perennial problems of labour, unemployment, underemployment and informal employment.

In 2012, there were around 487 million workers in India, the second largest after China. The country’s labour force will expand by 160-170 million in 2020, according to an ASSOCHAM-Thought Arbitrage joint study. The expansion will take into its ambit population growth rate, labour force participation, education enrolment at higher levels, etc. Thus, services of experts will be required to understand dimensions of organised and unorganised labour sector, and analyse labourers’ economic problems.

Expand your vision

A degree in humanities isn’t sufficient to crack a job interview. On the other hand, a degree with specialisation in a subject like this can turn around the game. Labour studies multiplies your chances of getting a job in both public and private sector.

Nature of curriculum

A student of labour studies has to master subjects like labour development, employment growth, Indian economy, labour market and labour mobilisation. One is also required to keep a tab on changing forms of production and labour, research methodology and employment trends. 

Scope of the subject

Post graduation in labour studies can help you work in fields like industrial relations, human resource, employment and labour law, government, non-government organisations, employment services, health and safety, and administration and management of labour resources.


To do master’s in labour studies, one should have a graduation degree with at least 50 per cent marks. Admission is on the basis of an entrance test.

Work profile

A labour relations manager and officer has a number of duties to perform, such as negotiating agreements between labour organisations and a company, studying wage data, and researching labour laws. Since labour relations managers handle employee grievances, labour disputes, and strikes, they need to have excellent communication skills.


A fresher with a degree in labour studies can earn Rs 10,000 to 25,000. In government sectors, salaries depend on the state government norms.


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