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School of Business and Management

Dr Maria Koumenta


Reader in Work and Labour Market Analysis

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 6925
Room Number: Room 4.25c, Francis Bancroft Building, Mile End Campus
Office Hours: Tuesday 1.00pm - 3.00pm



Dr. Koumenta is a Reader (Associate Professor) in Work and Labour Market Analysis. Her research activities are in the fields of labour economics and labour market policy. Dr. Koumenta works on labour market issues relating to pay, pay inequality, gender and ethnic pay gaps and non-standard forms of employment in the labour market.

She is one of the world's leading experts on occupational regulation and has various academic articles and policy reports in leading journals on this topic. Her work explores the characteristics and prevalence of occupational regulation and analyses its impact on labour market outcomes such as earnings, skills, employment, migration and social mobility.

She has led various projects funded by the UK government, the European Commission and has provided testimony and policy advice to UK government departments (HM Treasury, BEIS, Department of Health, Social Mobility Commission), parliamentary committees, and officials at the European Commission, the World Bank and the OECD.

Dr. Koumenta is on the Editorial Board of Work, Employment & Society and the Industrial Relations Journal. She is currently a Senior Research Fellow at the Knee Centre for the Analysis of Occupational Regulation, West Virginia University, USA.

Maria was awarded her PhD from the LSE, where she also worked as a researcher at the Centre for Economic Performance.



  • BUSM049: Reward Management
  • BUSM188: People Analytics


Research Interests:


Williams, M, Wang, S and Koumenta, M. (2023) "Ethnicity Disparities in Job Control in the United Kingdom" Industrial Relations Journal (forthcoming)

Koumenta, M., Pagliero, M., & Rostam-Afschar, D. (2022). Occupational regulation, institutions, and migrants’ labor market outcomes. Labour Economics79, 102250.

Kleiner M. and Koumenta M. (2022) Grease or Grit? International Case Studies of Occupational Licensing and Its Effects on Efficiency and Quality, WE Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, Michigan.

Koumenta, M. and M. Williams (2022). ‘Tougher Licensing Requirements and Quality Outcomes: Driving Instructors in the United Kingdom’ in M. Koumenta and M. Kleiner (Eds.) Grease Or Grit? International Case Studies of Occupational Licensing and Its Effects on Efficiency and Quality.  Kalamazoo, MI: W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.

Greene A. M., Kirton G., Koumenta M. and Humphris A. (2021). The Gender Representation gap: Implications for Workplace Union Effectiveness. Industrial Relations Journal52(1), 40-63.

Horton J., Kiosse P.V, Koumenta M and Mitrou E. (2020) The Role of CEOs in the Sustainability of Defined Benefit Pension Plans, Human Resource Management Journal,   31(3), 603-618

Williams, M. and Koumenta M. (2020). Occupational closure and job quality: The case of occupational licensing in Britain. Human Relations73(5), 711-736.)

Koumenta M. and Pagliero M. (2019). Occupational regulation in the European Union: coverage and wage effects. British Journal of Industrial Relations57(4), 818-849.

Koumenta M. and Williams M. (2019). An anatomy of zero‚Äźhour contracts in the UK. Industrial Relations Journal50(1), 20-40. 

Abell P. and Koumenta M. (2019) Case Studies and Statistics in Causal Analysis: The Role of Bayesian Narratives In Scientific Discovery in the Social Sciences. 413: 11-25.

Koumenta M, Pagliero M and Rostam-Afschar D. (2019) Effects of Regulation on Quality: Evidence from Six EU Countries, European Commission, Brussels

Koumenta M. and Pagliero M. (2016). ”Measuring prevalence and labour market impacts of occupational regulation in the EU.” Research Report to the European Commission.

Koumenta, M. (2015) ‘Public Service Motivation and Organizational Citizenship’, Public Money and Management, 35(5)

Koumenta M., Humphris A., Kleiner M. and Pagliero M. (2014) Occupational Regulation in the UK and EU: Prevalence and Labour Market Impact, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, London.

Koumenta M. and Sevilla A. (2014) The High Cost of High Pay: An Analysis of Within Establishment Pay Inequality in the UK, London: The High Pay Centre

Kim, S., Vandenabeele, W., Wright, B.E., Andersen, L.B., Cerase, F.P., Christensen, R.K., Desmarais, C., Koumenta, M., and Leisink, P., (2012) ‘Measuring Public Service Motivation: Developing and Instrument for International Use’, Journal of Public Administration Theory and Research, 23 (1) pp.  79-102,

Humphris, A, Kleiner, M. and Koumenta, M, (2011) Occupational Regulation in the UK and the US: Issues and Policy Implications, in Marden, D. (ed.) Employment in the Lean Years: Policy and prospects for the next decade, Oxford University Press

Bryson A., Forth J., Humphris A., Kleiner M. and Koumenta M. (2011) A Review of Occupational Regulation and its Impact, UK Commission for Employment and Skills, London

Koumenta, M. (2011) Modernisation, Privatisation and the Public Service Ethos in the UK, in Marden, D. (ed.) Employment in the Lean Years: Policy and prospects for the next decade, Oxford University Press


Dr Koumenta is interested in supervising PhD students in the areas of empirical labour economics, work and labour market analysis. You are welcome to contact Dr Koumenta ( to discuss your proposal and ideas.

Current doctoral students:

  • Ying Cui, ‘Social Returns to Education – Evidence from China’
  • Rebecca Florisson, 'Career mobility over the life course.' 
  • Yuliya Vanzhulora Tavares, ‘Gig Economy Work and Job Quality’
  • Lan Lu ‘Incidence and Labour Market Effects of Overtime in China’

PhD supervision completions:

  • Esther Arenas-Arroyo, 'Labour Market Outcomes of Undocumented Migrants.' Awarded 2015.
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