Hugh Bainbridge

Senior Lecturer

School of Management - BCom(Honours), University of Melbourne | PhD, University of Melbourne

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About Hugh

Dr. Hugh T.J. Bainbridge is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Management, UNSW Australia Business School. He holds a BCom(Hons) and a PhD in Human Resource Management and Organisational Behaviour from the University of Melbourne. He currently teaches “MGMT1001: Managing Organisations and People” in the undergraduate commerce program at UNSW. In his role as the Student Societies Liaison he is also the official point of contact for UNSW student societies associated with the School of Management.

Hugh’s research interests focus on workforce diversity with a specialisation on employees who, in addition to their job, also provide informal unpaid care to family members with disabilities. The current emphasis of his work is on eldercare, the work-caregiving interface, and how line managers and HR specialists can improve the workforce experience of employees with caregiving responsibilities and the people they care for. His research is published in a variety of outlets including the Academy of Management Review, Journal of Applied Psychology, and Human Resource Management.

At the moment, I am working on three major research projects.

  1. Social expectations and caregiver work-life balance decisions.
    In Australia there are 2.3 million caregivers, about 13% of the total population who provide assistance to those who need help because of disability or age. These “informal caregivers” provide ongoing, unpaid assistance to a person with a disability who is often their child, partner and/or an ageing parent. This project aims to explore societal views concerning the level and type of involvement caregivers are expected to have in the workforce. A content analysis of newspaper articles is being used to chart the distinct role expectations that exist for caregivers which legitimise their decisions, and how these are connected to adverse stereotypes that can lead to discrimination.
  2. Social support and the job search activities of people with disabilities.
    Only 23% of working-age people with disabilities are in full-time employment compared to 56% of working-age people without disabilities. However, despite the general acceptance that people with disabilities benefit from work, little is known about the role of social support provided by family members and friends of the disabled. Our goal in this research is to identify how the job search activities of people with disabilities are shaped by their family and friends. Based on interviews with job seekers with disabilities, we outline how social support affects job search activities and their subsequent employment outcomes.
  3. Exploring the work related benefits of government policy initiatives aimed at employees with caregiving responsibilities and the people with disabilities they assist.
    The ability of informal unpaid caregivers to maintain a job contributes to the well-being of people with autism. However, without support, many employees find it difficult to combine employment and caregiving. The study examines parallel hypotheses about whether the effectiveness of individualized funding for people with disabilities and their caregivers is associated with the likelihood of caregiver job turnover – and whether the care recipient’s type of disability moderates this relationship. Results indicate that individualized funding effectiveness is negatively related to caregiver job turnover. Furthermore, caregivers of people with autism are less likely to turnover when highly effective individualized funding was available.

Interested in studying these issues?

If you wish to discuss a potential research project as part of Honours, Masters, or PhD study I would be pleased to explore that interest with you.

Simply contact me at h.bainbridge@unsw.edu.au with an indication of
a) which level of study you are considering and
b) some brief thoughts about where your current research interests lie.

​As some illustrative examples, typical research projects that might fit well with my areas of expertise include those that consider the questions such as the following.

i) How do employees with different types of non-work commitments and family characteristics combine work and family roles?

ii) In what ways can managers and organisational HR practices assist employee efforts to combine work and family?

ii) What is the workforce of experience of diverse employees (e.g., disability, gender, age), and how can managers and HR professionals improve the employment outcomes of these employees?

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