PhD defence C.J.J. (Conny) Roobol


Prof.dr. P.A. Dykstra


Prof.dr. F. Koster

Thursday 17 Dec 2020, 11:30 - 13:00
PhD defence
Spoken Language
Senate Hall
Erasmus Building
Campus Woudestein
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On Thursday 17 December 2020, C.J.J. Roobol will defend her PhD dissertation, entitled: ‘Employable During Mid- and Late Career’.

Employability – defined as employees’ proactive learning motivation, professional ability and skills including mentorships – dominates public debates, yet research on the changing nature of, conditions for and outcomes of employability is scarce, disunified or limited in scope. This dissertation bridges these gaps by examining multiple drivers, barriers and outcomes of midcareer and senior employees’ employability in the Netherlands using a meso-level theoretical perspective and relying upon a mixture of panel, semi-experimental and cross-sectional survey data. I found that senior employees’ proactive learning motivation is hardly moldable and that their professional ability rather than proactivity is key to employment prospects. I also showed that midcareer and senior employees can accrue skills and employment benefits from informal mentorships – a spontaneously developed, growth-potential relationship between a midcareer or senior and junior employee – by being employed in a work environment that offers learning opportunities as well as social support and anticipates time pressures and turbulent reorganizations. These findings enable me to bring nuances to extant employability research by concluding that employee proactivity might be less susceptible to enhancement and plays a less crucial role in employment prospects than previous work led one to believe. I also enrich extant scientific inquiry by placing the organization at the heart of mentoring research and coining informal mentoring as a potentially fruitful measure to become and remain employable during mid- and late career.

Due to corona, the PhD defences do not take place publicly in the usual way in the Senate Hall of the Professor Andries Querido Room. The candidates will defend their dissertation either in a small group or online.

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