Global menu

Our global pages


Labor relations virtual conference - no going back?

Who should attend

This conference attracts those responsible for labour relations and employment policy, directors and VPs of HR, ER specialists and in-house lawyers.


Our 18th Annual Labor Relations Conference will again be delivered virtually this Autumn. Join us online with our great line-up of speakers, ask questions, get involved in the debate and network with your peers.

At the half-day conference we will hear from Christina McAnea, leader of the UK’s biggest trade union, Unison, and Alpesh Paleja, Lead Economist at the CBI, as they consider lessons learned over the past 12 months and the challenges ahead. As our workplaces continue to evolve, we will be joined by The Economist’s Callum Williams, author of “The Future of Work” and consider practical implications in our employer panel session.

We will also share our thoughts on what lies ahead for UK labor and employment law, including the emerging focus on ESG (environmental, social and governance) issues and what that means for labor relations.


9.15 (BST)

Chairperson’s introduction and welcome

Tom Player (Chair)
Employment Partner, Eversheds Sutherland

Labor law round-up

Marc Meryon
Head of Industrial Relations, Eversheds Sutherland

Insight from Unison

Christina McAnea
General Secretary, Unison

Comfort break


UK economic update

Alpesh Paleja
Lead Economist, CBI

The post-Covid workplace Callum Williams
Senior Writer, The Economist

Comfort break


New ways of working – employer panel session

Chaired by Clare Ward
Partner, Eversheds Sutherland

ESG - implications for employee engagement

Sophie White
Partner, Eversheds Sutherland

Chairperson's closing remarks

12.30 (BST)




Christina McAnea, General Secretary, Unison

Christina McAnea was elected General Secretary of UNISON in January 2021.  UNISON is the largest trade union in the UK with almost 1.4 million members including over 1 million women.

Christina grew up in a housing estate in Glasgow. She left school at 16 and worked in the civil service, the NHS and retail before going to university at the age of 22. Having achieved a degree in English and history, Christina first worked as a housing officer for Glasgow City Council, before moving to the GMB, where she advised workers taking cases against their employers to industrial tribunals.

In her time at UNISON, Christina became the union’s most senior negotiator, with a wide-ranging public services brief covering health, education, social care, local government and equalities. She has held senior positions across the union, negotiating on behalf of public service staff working in local government, police forces, schools, universities and colleges, private and voluntary sectors and the NHS. While head of health at the union, Christina played a key negotiating role in the national dispute over pensions, when up to two million public sector workers took part in a day of action in late 2011. Three years later, she was the lead negotiator in the first national health strike in England in 25 years.

Christina is a member of the ACAS Council, sits on the government’s Covid-19 social care stakeholder group and was the driving force behind the creation last year of the future social care coalition, campaigning for  fundamental change in the social care sector.

Alpesh Paleja, Lead Economist, CBI

Alpesh is Lead Economist in the CBI’s economics team, focusing on the UK economy and leading its work on the economic forecast. He also assists in overseeing the team’s broader analytical work – including the CBI’s prestigious business surveys – and is regular speaker at member events. He has worked at the CBI for over twelve years in a variety of roles: including previously covering emerging markets and leading economic analysis on a variety of policy projects.

Callum Williams, Senior Writer at The Economist

Callum Williams is Senior Economics Writer at The Economist, author of ‘The Classical School: The Birth of Economics in 20 Enlightened Lives’ and an expert speaker on economics, politics and global trends.

Callum has been with The Economist magazine for eight years. As Senior Economics Writer, he covers global economic trends including the labour market, political economy and housing. In April 2021 Callum authored a highly popular “special report” on the future of work, which focused on the future of working from home and corporate strategy, the prospects for automation and robotics, and the chances of an economic bounce-back in 2021 and beyond. He is also the author of a special report on global housing markets.

In the past year he has written or co-written a number of The Economist’s most popular pieces, from “the 90% economy” (about the long-term economic impacts of lockdowns) to “will inflation return?” and the future of working from home. He is also the author of ‘The Classical School: The Birth of Economics in 20 Enlightened Lives’ (2020), which explores the history of economic thought.

Callum’s economic insights are highly sought after and he has been interviewed by the BBC World Service, Sky News and Al Jazeera, among others.

Callum has studied at Cambridge, Oxford and Harvard, where he was supervised by Amartya Sen.


Cost: £225

All prices are exclusive of VAT

Select a date

virtual online
09:15 - 12:30 (Local time)

Forthcoming events and seminars