Dr Susan James Relly

Deputy Director, Centre on Skills, Knowledge and Organisational Performance (SKOPE), Department of Education; Research Fellow, Green Templeton College


Dr James Relly’s research interests include Vocational Education and Training (VET) systems and policy; vocational excellence; apprenticeship; work-based learning; on-the-job and off-the-job training, social mobility; and low skill and low wage occupations. Her interest in vocational education developed while teaching in secondary schools where she recognised the need and importance of vocational subjects for students not interested in a purely academic route.

Her background is in qualitative research and her current work focuses on:

  • Understanding and developing vocational excellence broadly and specifically in the context of skills competitions;
  • Apprenticeship, policy and employer engagement, particularly focusing on workplace learning;
  • Vocational education and training and social mobility; and
  • Skills policy.


  • Apprenticeships
  • Vocational education and training
  • Low skill, low wage work
  • Recruitment and selection
  • Workplace learning