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Title: (re) Formation of Local Nodes in Global Producation Networks
Authors: Ayaz, Muhammad
Keywords: Management and Organisational Studies
Management Sciences
Bussiness & Management
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Lahore University of Management Science, Lahore.
Abstract: Manufacturing firms are generally enmeshed in complex webs of relationships that span across the globe, commonly known as Global Production Network (GPN). Contrary to conventional economic thinking, GPNs are not determined by market considerations alone. GPNs take their shape from political and social institutions which are conditions of possibility of economic transactions. While acknowledging the role of global and local institutional context in GPN (re)formation, existing GPN literature generally does not provide an adequate explanation of how various kinds of institutions operating across different geographical spaces interact to affect local nodes in GPN. Similarly, GPN literature also recognizes GPN (re)configuration as a contingent process which is open to challenge by strategic actors. Nevertheless, GPN research emphasizes economic coordination rather than political contestation and treats firm as a block box. The focus is on the inter-firm structures and relationships while dynamics within the firm are ignored. Drawing upon a detailed qualitative case study about the process of changing work regime at a local node, that is, Pakistan’s garment manufacturing industry, in global garment production network (GGPN), the thesis aims to fill those gaps. The case study is about the transformation of work practices in Pakistan’s garment manufacturing industry from a production by self-employed groups of male stitchers to an assembly line-based system of manufacturing with full time female stitchers. This dissertation analyses GGPN in context of its embeddedness in global and local political, economic, and social institutions and provides a nuanced explanation of (re)formation of a local node in GGPN. The analysis emphasizes the interplay of global-local institutions and develops an appreciation of the various tensions that lie just beneath the surface of such networks. The focus is on intra-firm politics of control and the ongoing efforts of the industry and their civil society partners, especially UN agencies to push this change through the industry and its implications for value creation and appropriation. The thesis brings to surface the under-researched roles of labour and multilateral organizations in processes of (re)formation of local nodes. This is achieved by integrating GPN and labour process research, which are useful complementary resources to illuminate the contestations over value creation and appropriation in GPNs. The study identified the specific strategies used by labour and multilateral organizations to shape the local node in specific ways to advance their interests. For labour, the strategies identified are “political sabotage”, “hit and rescue”, and “identity politics”. The study reveals the specific combination of these discursive and material resistance strategies through which labour plays an active role in (re)formation of local nodes. Similarly, this study identified the three specific strategies used by multilateral organizations to shape the capital-labour struggles at workplace: “legitimizing women’s work”, “making a business case for female employment”, and “managing the transition” from one factory regime to the other. This research highlights that in this case, multilateral organizations remained hand in glove with global capital in reformation of the local node to give birth to a new kind of work organization.
Gov't Doc #: 15594
Appears in Collections:PhD Thesis of All Public / Private Sector Universities / DAIs.

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