Why We Work: A Public Exhibit

November 10, 2023 by CIRHR Communications

Most of us will spend a third of our adult lives at work. 

Why We Work, a public exhibit created by the CIRHR, explores the question of how we think of work, what motivates us to work, and how the answers to these questions shape us as individuals and as a society.  

Building on the success of The Changing Face of Work, the CIRHR and the IRHR Library have worked with Projektor and B3 Strategy to introduce undergraduate students and the broader university community to the field of industrial relations and human resources.  

Why We Work had its official launch at the annual Sefton-Williams Memorial Lecture on March 28th, 2019. The exhibit combines physical banners and digital content to bridge online and offline spaces and create new opportunities for audience participation.

First made available online, phase one of the project included background information about the image used and a more comprehensive introduction to the conceptualizations of work, drawn from The Thought of Work by John Budd.

As of summer 2023, we're very pleased to unveil all final panels currently on display outside WW126 (Woodsworth College, 119 St George St.), including "Work as an Existential Crisis" which looks at the impact of crises like the COVID-19 pandemic on workers. 

Work as an Existential Crisis

Work as Freedom


Work as a Curse


Work as Care


Work as Fulfillment