Centers & Programs


Center for Labor Research & Education (Labor Center)

Founded in 1964, the Labor Center conducts research and education on issues related to labor and employment. The Center’s curricula and leadership trainings serve to educate a diverse new generation of labor leaders and carries out research on topics such as job quality and workforce development issues.


California Policy Lab

A joint project of UC Berkeley and UC Los Angeles, the California Policy Lab curates administrative data from across California’s government and supports efforts by agencies in partnership with faculty and students to mine this information to produce cutting-edge policy research on key issues from education and criminal justice, to social services and labor.


Center for the Study of Child Care Employment

Established in 1999, the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment (CSCCE) is focused on achieving comprehensive public investments that enable the early childhood workforce to deliver high-quality care and education for all children. To achieve this goal, CSCCE conducts research and policy analysis about the characteristics of those who care for and educate young children and examines policy solutions aimed at improving how our nation prepares, supports, and rewards these early educators to ensure young children’s optimal development.


Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics

The Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics (CWED) was established in June 2007 to provide a focus for projects on wage and employment trends in contemporary labor markets. CWED’s main focus over the past several years has been on minimum and subminimum wage floors at the federal, state and local levels.


California Public Employee Relations

The leading program on California public sector labor and employment relations. Covering recent developments and laws relating to employment in local government, public schools, higher education, and state government through its pocket guides and seminars.


Affiliated Centers & Programs

The Shift Project
A joint project of UC Berkeley and UCSF, The Shift Project studies precarious employment in the United States, with a particular focus on workplace scheduling practices at the nation’s largest retail and food service firms. Shift researchers use this employer-employee linked data to examine the causes of precarious employment practices, assess the consequences of these practices for worker and family health and wellbeing, and conduct policy evaluations.

UC Berkeley Opportunity Lab
The Opportunity Lab (O-Lab) focuses on generating rigorous research on poverty and inequality in the United States and other developed countries. O-Lab is a growing network of Berkeley faculty generating cutting-edge research addressing the following six areas and how they affect poverty and inequality: climate and environment, crime and criminal justice policy, education and child development policy, health, social safety net and employment, and taxation and inequality.

California Studies Association
Members of the California Studies Association conduct interdisciplinary research on the past and present of the State of California by a distinguished group of faculty and staff on the Berkeley and Davis campuses. the CSA hosts a series of dinners at IRLE during the academic year; see their blog for a schedule of events.

Center for Culture, Organizations & Politics
Focuses on how new social spaces emerge, form, and are transformed. The Center supports an ongoing workshop where work in progress is presented and discussed.

Interdisciplinary Immigration Workshop
The Interdisciplinary Immigration Workshop (affiliated with the Berkeley Interdisciplinary Migration Initiative) meets every two weeks during the academic year so members can share work-in-progress about any aspect of research on migration/ immigration. Chaired by Professors Irene Bloemraad and Christina Mora, the workshop is open to graduate students, post-docs, faculty and visiting researchers. Undergraduates completing a senior thesis have also joined our discussions. Members read circulated work, offer feedback and, depending on demand, can shop a paper, grant proposal, dissertation chapter, or other in-progress work. Early drafts of work circulated in the workshop have gone on to win major awards for ‘best book,’ ‘best published article,’ ‘best student paper’ and a variety of grant and fellowship competitions.


Archived Programs

Center for Work, Technology and Society Work & Health Initiative
IRLE Director Emeritus Clair Brown chairs WTS, and conducts extensive field work in the U.S. and Pacific Rim.

Work & Health Initiative
Policy research, public service, and community education in workers’ compensation, with projects focusing in particular on the return-to-work process and legal services for injured workers.

Center For Organization and Human Resource Effectiveness
Blended academic with high-level management perspectives concerning problems of organization and human resources management.