Home > Departments > Organization Sciences > Staff > Dr. I. Sabelis
  • Telephone:+31 20 59 86711
  • Room nr:3a-93
  • E-mail:i.sabelis@vu.nl
  • Unit:faculteit der sociale wetenschappen ( afdeling organisatiewetenschappen )
  • Position:Associate professor


Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, or by e-mail.


  • Time, organization and management (sustainability of work, compression of work processes, time perception vs. time use)
  • Diversity and organization, including the realm of sex workers’ rights and positioning
  • Methodological interests: ethnography, discourse analysis, storytelling, life history research  



  • Coordination Master COM
  • Organizational Ethnography;
  • Research Lab (coordinaton - online teaching)


Central concepts are “Frayed Careers” (Sabelis 2010) and ecofeminism. These concepts combine time, gender, age and other diversity issues with processes of power and identity in organizational and social contexts. Work, family life, leisure, and life course issues (age; life phases; different rhythms <> different options) deserve more in-depth attention in order to find new ways of combining elements of contemporary everyday life, or under Liquid Modernity (Bauman 2000). The ultimate idea is to develop ideas for new rhythms (Huijer & Sabelis 2010) that do justice to sustainability of people’s lives and contribute to the notion of “future matters” (Adam & Groves 2007). In sum, the research stresses the importance of providing insight in (organizational) processes in their  long term effects and in terms of diversity and social justice.

2015 Projects:

  • Creating Opportunities? Economic Empowerment, Political Positioning and Participation of Sex Workers in Kenya and Ethiopia. – cooperation with Dr. Lorraine Nencel (dept. of sociology), with SOA-Aids Nederlands, and with partners in Kenya and Ethiopia.
  • Bush Wives’ Lives: a biographical study of lives of game rangers’ wives in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa.


  • In preparation: VARGES - VARiations on GEnder theories and Sustainability: Analyses of social-ecological transformation processes in a European Context – cooperation with Uta von Winterberg (Wuppertal Institute, Germany), Nina Katz (Independent researcher, Lüneburg), Mary Phillips (Reader in Organization Studies, Bristol, UK).


Publications (Source: METIS VU)

further information

Short bio:
Based on her experience in the emancipatory movements of the 1970s and her career in social – emancipatory work (Bildung) in The Netherlands and Germany, Ida Sabelis worked as an organisational consultant and trainer on the topic ‘diversity in organizations’. In the early 1980s, she co-founded Kantharos, consultancy for management of diversity, with Lida van den Broek (also in Germany and Belgium). Both were first year student at the (then brand-new) course Culture, Organization and Management at the VU, Amsterdam in 1990.
From the mid 1990s on, the perspective of time/s in organizations offered a conceptual framework further to theorize questions of inequality in organizations (gender, multiculturalism, and diversity) and of long-term development of organizations (sustainability, future/s, continuity and change). Fascinated by the development of organizational analysis via a perspective of time/s, she continued to expand her international network, more in a broad (interdisciplinary) sense than with a focus on specific themes.
Through publications, congress organization and presentations, she established a position in the field of inter/national and interdisciplinary time studies, conceptually focusing on methodology and critical theory, and thematically on diversity (gender) and sustainability (future studies). From 1998 on, she was involved in several key conferences (Isida – Palermo, Italy; Egos – Helsinki, Time–Ecology project, Tutzing / Germany, Discourse and Organization – London, Amsterdam, Brest – France) resulting, among other things, in the publication of Making Time (2002, Oxford University Press, with Richard Whipp and Barbara Adam – also published in Chinese, Beying University Press, 2010), Zeitvielfalt (2006, Hirzel Verlag, Germany, with Karlheinz Geissler and Klaus Kümmerer), Organizational Culture (2011, with Sierk Ybema and Dvora Yanow), and numerous journal articles.
Co-organizer of the biennial conferences of the Journal Gender, Work and Organization (next in 2016) - http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1468-0432
Member of the organizing group of The International Organizational Discourse Conferences (UK – NL)
Member of Tutzing Zeitakademie, Tutzing, Germany (time and sustainability)

CV Ida Sabelis

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