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Globalization and Precarious Forms of Production and Employment

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Table of Contents

Contents: 1. Introduction: Globalization and Precarious Forms of Production and Employment: Challenges for Workers and Unions Carole Thornley, Steve Jefferys and Beatrice Appay 2. In the Age of Wal-Mart: Precarious Work and Authoritarian Management in the Global Supply Chain Nelson Lichtenstein 3. `Precarization' and Flexibility in the Labour Process: A Question of Legitimacy and a Major Challenge for Democracy Beatrice Appay 4. Legitimating Precarious Employment: Aspects of the Post-Fordism and Lean Production Debates Dan Coffey and Carole Thornley 5. Global Restructuring of Transnational Companies: Negotiations in the Auto Industry Isabel da Costa and Udo Rehfeldt 6. Trade Unions Facing Uncertainty in Central and Eastern Europe Sylvie Contrepois and Steve Jefferys 7. Seasonal Workers in Mediterranean Agriculture: Flexibility and Insecurity in a Sector Under Pressure Beatrice Mesini 8. The Rise in Precarious Employment and Union Responses in Australia Iain Campbell 9. Hyper-flexibility in the IT Sector: Myth or Reality? Isabelle Berrebi-Hoffmann, Michel Lallement, Martine Pernod-Lemattre and Francois Sarfati 10. The Increasing Use of `Market' Concepts in Negotiations, and Contextualizing Factors Jens Thoemmes 11. Trade Union Responses to Privatization and Restructuring of Production in Argentina in the 1990s: Similarities and Differences in Two State-owned Companies Juliana Frassa, Leticia Muniz Terra and Alejandro Naclerio 12. Organizing and Mobilizing Precarious Workers in France: The Case of Cleaners in the Railways Heather Connolly 13. Growing Power Asymmetries, Individualization and the Continuing Relevance of Collective Responses Rachid Bouchareb 14. Changing Lanes or Stuck in the Slow Lane? Employment Precariousness and Labour Market Status of MG Rover Workers Four Years After Closure Alex de Ruyter, David Bailey and Michelle Mahdon 15. `Politics of Production', A New Challenge for Unionism: Workers Facing Citizens in the French Civil Nuclear Energy Patrick Chaskiel Index

About the Author

Edited by Carole Thornley, Senior Lecturer, Keele Management School, Keele University, UK, Steve Jefferys, formerly Director, Working Lives Research Institute, London Metropolitan University, UK and Beatrice Appay, Senior Research Fellow, CNRS, France


`. . . the book provides some valuable and fascinating insights into the increasingly precarious nature of modern work and raises issues which should be of concern to anyone interested in the idea of a fairer and more equal society.' -- Tony Royle, Work, Employment and Society `This book makes a unique and invaluable contribution to our understanding of the changing nature of employment and its consequences for industrialized societies. It combines industry case studies, company case studies, and specific country case studies to paint a multi-dimensional picture of the spread of precarious employment and the responses by trade unions and other worker mobilizations. In addition, the astute theoretical chapters demonstrate how the trend toward precarization is reshaping power relationships in ways that have significant implications for individual security and well-being, collective agency and empowerment, societal equality and stability, and the vitality of democracy itself. Together these essays provide an exceptionally rich picture and insightful analysis of these important trends in contemporary industrialized societies.' -- Katherine V.W. Stone, UCLA School of Law, US `Precarious work has become a central model for organizing contemporary employment. Covering precarity in an unprecedented spectrum of sectors - manufacturing, agriculture, retail, IT, services - this book is an invaluable research tool. More, in its accessibility it will set the pace for teachable texts in this emerging field. Covering an equally broad range of international experiences, this book for the first time introduces work not previously available in English. Its broad international coverage allows the authors to burst the conceptual bubble of even some of the left's own most cherished categories. It analyses responses by workers and unions, and evaluates strategies that have and haven't worked. Read it, teach it, take it to work!' -- Neil Smith, University of New York, US `Globalization and Precarious Forms of Production and Employment makes an important and timely contribution to scholarly debates about the nature and dynamics of precarious employment as they are shaped by global processes of production, distribution, and exchange. The volume's coverage of macro, meso, and micro level developments posing challenges and opportunities for workers and unions, together with its effective mix of country, region and industry-specific case studies, drawn from a wide range of contexts within and outside English language contexts is impressive indeed. It is essential reading for scholars, students, and activists in North and South America, Europe and Australasia, concerned not only about understanding precariousness but the continued importance of democratic collective responses questioning its spread. Its editors are to be congratulated on producing an original and tightly focused collection of quality essays.' -- Leah F. Vosko, York University, Canada

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