Jos Akkermans
Department of Management and Organization, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

speaker on June 29, 2023

Can everyone craft a sustainable career?

As a result of a rapidly changing world of work characterized by many challenges and uncertainties, research on sustainable careers has started to flourish in recent years. Career sustainability is about finding ways to renew resources instead of depleting them, characterized by finding a balance between happiness, health, and productivity over time.

Researchers in the area of careers and vocational behavior have offered valuable insights into how people can safeguard their career sustainability, for example, through career competencies development and career crafting. Yet, how “craftable” are sustainable careers? Are they feasible for everyone? And what about the role of sudden disruptions in people’s work and careers?

In this keynote talk, we will discuss the background and current status of research on sustainable careers. Furthermore, we will reflect on the role of career proactivity and career shocks in people’s career sustainability.

Concerning the theme of the conference, Jos Akkermans remarks that his research is mainly situated in the area of career development. Yet, discussions on lifelong development are mostly seen from the perspective of human resource development, which offers opportunities for interdisciplinary connections. Therefore, Jos is looking forward to connect these two different research fields together with other speakers and the audience during the conference. What are the similarities and differences? How can we learn from each other?


Here you can find two recent publications specifically concerning sustainable careers and
career shocks:

Sustainable careers: Towards a conceptual model

The role of career shocks in contemporary career development: key challenges and
ways forward.

A qualitative exploration of solo self-employed workers’ career sustainability. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 134, 103692.

“Career shocks, sooner or later, happen to each of us. Disruptive events have a considerable impact on everyone’s career. How does this come into play when understanding and stimulating sustainable careers?”