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Reworking postfordism: Labor process versus employment relations

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journal contribution
posted on 27.11.2017 by Matt Vidal
The Fordism/postfordism framework has been widely used, but also heavily criticized, in the social sciences. I outline the central points of debate over the use of this framework for analysis of work organization, including the range of models offered as successors to Fordism. I then suggest that, while some criticisms of the concept of postfordism have highlighted important problems and issues, the Fordist/postfordist framework can be elaborated as an analytically coherent, theoretically illuminating approach to the historical, institutional, and comparative analysis of work and employment. Although researchers appear to be using the concept of postfordism increasingly less frequently over the last decade, I argue that it provides a unifying framework within which to analyze work and employment relations in the current phase of capitalism, which is characterized by an apparent variety of new organizational forms within a broader context of increasing disconnectedness of economic institutions. Lean production has become established as the predominant postfordist labor process, widespread in manufacturing but also increasingly being implemented in services. However, this must be distinguished from a broader set of changes in employment relations. © 2011 The Author. Sociology Compass © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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  • Loughborough University London

Published in

Sociology Compass

Volume

5

Issue

4

Pages

273 - 286

Citation

VIDAL, M., 2011. Reworking postfordism: Labor process versus employment relations. Sociology Compass, 5(4), pp. 273-286.

Publisher

Wiley

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2011

Notes

This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: VIDAL, M., 2011. Reworking postfordism: Labor process versus employment relations. Sociology Compass, 5(4), pp. 273-286, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-9020.2011.00366.x. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

eISSN

1751-9020

Language

en

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