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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2012

Silvia Gherardi and Annalisa Murgia

The article conceptualizes the dilemma between exploration and exploitation for flexible knowledge workers. At a time when work is fragmented and society is…

Abstract

The article conceptualizes the dilemma between exploration and exploitation for flexible knowledge workers. At a time when work is fragmented and society is individualized, we consider, besides the strategies of organizations, also those of workers and the ways in which they move among organizations in an attempt to ‘get by’ between increased margins of autonomy and a lack of the resources necessary to pursue their passions and to fulfil their projects. Through analysis of the life stories of flexible knowledge workers and their relationships with the organizations for which they work, the article illustrates how flexible knowledge workers handle the tension between exploration and exploitation and how organizations resist their attempts. The purpose is to interpret the pervasiveness of individualization processes that prompt individuals to think of themselves as organizations, while human resource management claim that people are their most valuable resource but treat them as disposable workers.

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Managing ‘Human Resources’ by Exploiting and Exploring People’s Potentials
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-506-7

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Book part
Publication date: 30 December 2004

John Logan

The campaign for striker replacement legislation, which began in the late 1980s and had effectively ended by the mid-1990s, was the most important political battle over…

Abstract

The campaign for striker replacement legislation, which began in the late 1980s and had effectively ended by the mid-1990s, was the most important political battle over labor legislation since the defeat of the Labor Law Reform Bill in 1978. Striker replacement was the AFL-CIO’s top legislative priority in the early 1990s and, coming quickly after the passage of NAFTA, which labor had opposed, the defeat of its campaign solidified organized labor’s reputation for failure in legislative battles. As yet, however, the political campaign for striker replacement legislation has attracted surprisingly little attention from industrial relations scholars.

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Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-305-1

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Book part
Publication date: 5 February 2016

Vicki Smith

In this tribute to Randy Hodson, I will demonstrate how the defining concept of his research – that “life demands dignity and meaningful work is essential for dignity”…

Abstract

In this tribute to Randy Hodson, I will demonstrate how the defining concept of his research – that “life demands dignity and meaningful work is essential for dignity” (Hodson, 2001, p. 3) – has led me to fundamentally reinterpret much of my earlier fieldwork, principally represented in Managing in the Corporate Interest: Control and Resistance in an American Bank (Smith, 1990) and Crossing the Great Divide: Worker Risk and Opportunity in the New Economy (Smith, 2001). I then suggest that we add a fifth condition to his formulation of challenges to dignity. Hodson identified four: management abuse, overwork, limits on autonomy, and contradictions of employee involvement. The framework needs to be contextualized within the fifth major challenge of our times: the broader environment of employment precariousness under neoliberalism that has deeply affected our micro-experiences at work, including those singled out by Hodson.

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A Gedenkschrift to Randy Hodson: Working with Dignity
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-727-1

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1986

John Nirenberg

How transferable is the Japanese way of managing? New evidence indicates some interesting trends.

Abstract

How transferable is the Japanese way of managing? New evidence indicates some interesting trends.

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Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

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Article
Publication date: 8 June 2010

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Human Resource Management International Digest, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1991

Tomoko Furugori

The Japanese economy, facing a severe labourshortage, may need to seek a fuller utilisation ofwomen. Circumstantial evidence about the labourshortage is described, and…

Abstract

The Japanese economy, facing a severe labour shortage, may need to seek a fuller utilisation of women. Circumstantial evidence about the labour shortage is described, and Japanese wage and income tax systems are analysed, from which it is found that they are institutionally working against women seeking to enter the labour market. Wage and income tax structures must be reformed if the labour supply of women is to be increased, not to mention their economic and social advancement.

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International Journal of Manpower, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

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Book part
Publication date: 19 June 2019

Rebecca Prentice

The 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza factory building in Dhaka, Bangladesh, was the most deadly disaster in garment manufacturing history, with at least 1,134 people killed…

Abstract

The 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza factory building in Dhaka, Bangladesh, was the most deadly disaster in garment manufacturing history, with at least 1,134 people killed and hundreds injured. In 2015, injured workers and the families of those killed received compensation from global apparel brands through a US$30 million voluntary initiative known as the Rana Plaza Arrangement. Overseen by the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Rana Plaza Arrangement awarded payments to survivors using a pricing formula developed by a diverse team of ‘stakeholders’ that included labour groups, multinational apparel companies, representatives of the Bangladesh government and local employers, and ILO actuaries. This paper draws from anthropological scholarship on the ‘just price’ to explore how a formula for pricing death and injury became both the means and form of a fragile political settlement in the wake of a shocking and widely publicised industrial disaster. By unpacking the complicated ‘ethics of a formula’ (Ballestero, 2015), I demonstrate how the project of creating a just price involves not two sets of values (ethical and financial) but rather multiple, competing values. This paper argues for recognition of the persistence and power of these competing values, showing how they variously strengthen and undermine the claim that justice was served by the Rana Plaza Arrangement. This analysis reveals the deficiencies of counterposing ‘morality’ and ‘economy’ in the study of price by reflecting upon all elements of price as situated within political economy and history.

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The Politics and Ethics of the Just Price
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-573-5

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2006

Colin Bryson and Richard Blackwell

To evaluate whether “numerical flexibility” – specifically a form of temporary and precarious employment – hourly‐paid part‐time teaching in the UK higher education sector…

Abstract

Purpose

To evaluate whether “numerical flexibility” – specifically a form of temporary and precarious employment – hourly‐paid part‐time teaching in the UK higher education sector – adds strategic value and demonstrates good practice.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on new evidence drawn from five case study organisations in which a range of managers was interviewed in depth.

Findings

Analysis identifies a continuum of strategies from integration into the main workforce through to “deepened differentiation”. Although integration is somewhat problematic when applied to a diverse group, differentiation seems predicated on a defensive, risk management approach designed to further marginalise this activity. Also, differentiation fails to address the aspirations of many employees, creating tensions between institutional strategy and the needs of academic heads.

Research limitations/implications

The number of case studies is limited. These case studies were selected because they had the most proactive strategies on this issue, which infers that the majority of employers in HE have not been rather less strategic or proactive.

Practical implications

The paper is of particular value to HR professionals considering the use of numerical flexibility approaches. It also contributes to the academic debate on the strategic value of such approaches.

Originality/value

The paper explores a neglected but important area of the workforce. The paper notes that some supposed benefits of numerical flexibility might be illusory, such as the deployment of allegedly “cheap and disposable” substitute workers which may be offset by unintentional consequences including rigidities in an organisation's human resource systems.

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Personnel Review, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Book part
Publication date: 13 April 2011

Tim Callan, Brian Nolan and John Walsh

An important aspect of the impact of the economic crisis is how pay in the public sector responds – in the face not only of the evolution of pay in the private sector but…

Abstract

An important aspect of the impact of the economic crisis is how pay in the public sector responds – in the face not only of the evolution of pay in the private sector but also extreme pressure on public spending (of which pay is a very large proportion) as fiscal deficits soar. What are the effects on the income distribution of cutting public sector pay rates or alternative strategies to reduce the public sector pay bill? This chapter investigates these issues using data and a tax–benefit simulation model for Ireland, a country which faces a particularly severe fiscal crisis and where innovative measures have already been implemented to claw back pay from public sector workers in the guise of a ‘pension levy’, followed by a significant cut in nominal pay rates. The SWITCH (Simulating Welfare and Income Tax Changes) tax–benefit model first allows the distributional effects of these measures, which achieved a substantial reduction in the net public sector pay bill, to be teased out. The overall impact on the income distribution is assessed. This provides empirical evidence relevant to policy choices in relation to a key aspect of household income over which governments have direct influence, while at the same time illustrating methodologically how a tax–benefit model can serve as the base for such investigation.

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Who Loses in the Downturn? Economic Crisis, Employment and Income Distribution
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-749-0

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Article
Publication date: 20 June 2008

Chika Ezinwanne Udechukwu

This paper sets out to investigate the various inhibiting factors to individual home ownership in Nigeria. It aims to establish just how feasible home ownership is in Nigeria.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper sets out to investigate the various inhibiting factors to individual home ownership in Nigeria. It aims to establish just how feasible home ownership is in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

Secondary data were obtained from journals, government publications and technical reports. The sources are sorted into sections: prices of the houses, inflation rate, income levels of Nigerians.

Findings

The dominant informal sector in the national economy does not augur well for housing delivery; job creation and economic empowerment are the primary catalysts for increased disposable incomes and savings that will subsequently boost investment in home‐ownership.

Practical implications

With hard work and diligence in policy formulation, project implementation and economic resuscitation, home‐ownership will no longer be a utopian ideal but a national reality. The nation's policy makers must begin to adopt strategies that have practical application in the immediate environment.

Originality/value

This paper comprehensively highlights the various home ownership finance options available in Nigeria, and critically assesses how practicable these options are to the average Nigerian.

Details

International Journal of Housing Markets and Analysis, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8270

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