Table of Contents

Handbook of Research on Sustainable Careers

Handbook of Research on Sustainable Careers

Research Handbooks in Business and Management series

Edited by Ans De Vos and Beatrice I.J.M. van der Heijden

What is a sustainable career and how can individuals and organizations develop pathways that lead to them? With current levels of global unemployment and the need for life-long learning and employability enhancement these questions assume a pressing significance. With twenty-eight chapters from leading scholars, the Handbook of Research on Sustainable Careers makes an important contribution to our understanding of sustainable careers and lays the foundation for the direction of future research.

Chapter 25: Career continuance and transfer of competencies after job transitions: insights from a Swedish study

Claudia Bernhard-Oettel and Katharina Näswall

Subjects: business and management, human resource management, organisational behaviour, strategic management


This chapter highlights career continuance and sustainability within the framework of competency transfer in the context of re-employment coaching. Using the perspective of near–far transfer, this chapter discusses the importance of job context and content similarity for successful competency transfer to occur. Implications for different types of job and career transitions are exemplified. Furthermore, successful transfer of competencies is discussed in relation to individuals’ competency profile, their willingness to transfer their competencies, as well as factors which either facilitate or hinder competency transfer. To illustrate our discussion, we present examples from a Swedish research project studying the transition from unemployment to employment among individuals receiving re-employment coaching after involuntary job loss. Findings are discussed both in relation to the transfer of competencies framework and considering the Swedish context.

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