A research-based upon the correlation between labour and technology can draw plenty of ideas from the different theories upon technological determination. The phenomenon of technological determinism is considered the most important and contested idea in the studies of labour and technology. The answer to the question of whether technological determinism is dead or not would define the path of further research
A broad understanding of how workers perceive technology as something new and trade unions as old structures are emerging from the technicist viewpoint. This article pinpoints the root of the problems and how it can be rectified through paradigms such as actor-network theory. This article also informs us about the correlation between technology and other factors such as gender, race, political economy and skills of labour. Ultimately the author gives a holistic picture of the relation between computation and nature of work, where he defines any new technology should be called as computation.
The socio-technical system methodology and analytical tool helps to rectify the issues aroused out of normative viewpoint upon technology. It helps me to understand how labour is subordinated by social and political relations, then technology. He argues that it is not the technology which determines society, but a society with its political and cultural implications decides technology and its inventions. This paper also gives an excellent insight on how technology is not something new to modern society, but every society possesses its own technology, which is neither superior or inferior when we analyse it through and as a socio-technical system.
The idea of technological equilibrium is a new idea stems from a structuralist perspective, which will help me to understand, why there is no huge organised reciprocal action by actors. This study points out to the different researchers by engineers and natural scientist to achieve human-like features of robotics. The day to day newspaper reports shows some of the other inventions, which reduced the gap between human being and robots. From the conventional system of cognitive reasoning to an understanding of emotions and ability to discrete by robots is a huge leap. The only factor which defends the automation of low skill work was its human nature along with discretion, physical and mental skills. Now, with the above mentioned technological progress, it is seriously suspectable to think of automation in low skill works too... this will help us how to understand the industrial relations from a new perspective, yet to emerge in sweatshops and informal economy.
The crux of the relation between technology and labour is the process of automation. Autor and Adams argue that in the 1970s people were panicked about the job loss and other effects expected of automation. But here the author, Virginia Eubank’s gives a chilling account of how technology along with its high tech tools are profiling, policing and perpetuating inequality upon working class and poor. This books helped me to understand. The greater implications of technology in and outside of work life of a wage earner. The effects of automation, technological monitoring, disciplining, and subordination is not only at a factory, industry or corporate cabin but also in the daily routine. the author’s reasonable fear about will not only makes people jobless but also makes them insecure about their every other aspect of life such as health, wellbeing etc.
The basic focus of this research is on the effect of political processes such as elections and economic policies (such as neoliberalism) in determining the labour market and in negating the idea of technological determinism. The article has also helped me to look into the gig economy. A booming economy, with coordination through technology has fascinated me to study more about it.
This article is one of the foundational literature in the field of technology and labour. Most of the literature I have reviewed had the name of this author and this article as an important reference text. The article helped me to navigate through the diverse correlations between different sections of labour, different automation, and technological interventions. A holistic view of labour with regard to production patterns and technology lead us to the hidden social, economic and political factors involved in it. In fact, the graveness of the mistakes I always commit was reminded by the author. Totally speaking, the author's argument of heterogeneous labour and technology that must be understood in the context of time and space is sensible along with his empirical evidence. This study gives us a basic analytical tool and cautions us about the inevitability of influence by popular notions.
"Flexibility allows the managers to meet the needs of the organisation and constantly adjust to global and local demands through coordination and allocation of the organisation's resources"
One of the important ideas in this artefact that helps in my research is the comparative analysis of macro flexible organisations like corporations and their correlation in defining the body politics of the workers and his labour through a similar analogy of the flexible body. The labour process theory by Harry Braverman explains the importance of the body in the realm of skills. The deskilling process and mechanization of the body are two major concepts related to the Marxist idea of alienation and Foucauldian idea of biopolitics. This concepts, in turn, is very much helpful in the context of what Emily Martin argues as a flexible body. one of the important observation made by the author is flexibility is a desirable feature in a post-industrial society, but an imposed ideology of flexibility on the body and its understanding is only profitable for corporations and their creation called flexible specialization of the economy.
The two main ideas analysed in the book such as 'entrepreneurial citizens' itself is important to my broad research area of sociology of tech, space and work. The first one is regarding the importance of start-ups and work in defining the entrepreneur economy of India. The second is the assessment of socio-cultural imagination behind the relationship between innovation and upliftment of poor enhanced through technology in the epoch of neoliberalism. This helps me to locate the correlation between technology and geographical spaces for my research. for example, the author underlines the contradictions of India(modern) and Bharath (traditional), which surfaces when I try to map out and compare the Bangalore’s technology-based start-ups(which is considered as the established geography for start-ups) with the growing ambitions on technology and start-ups in a small town like Calicut in Kerala. According to the author, even though the Indian IT tycoons and planning elites understand these contradictions in reality and formulate their theories upon it. but they along with the state is trying to reimagine the discourse and policies upon 'development', through imposing entrepreneurialism as an ideology of emancipation of rural masses by themselves rather than state-oriented planning, they are also expected to take the responsibility rather than out crying for civil rights and better social and economic. So technological start-ups are considered as the cutting edge idea for such a hyped venture. The production of expertise, not just for economic purpose, but also to achieve the goal of upliftiment of poor is the primary goal. For my research, I can use this hypothesis to evaluate how successful they were and how it is implemented through start-ups to make entrepreneur communities. If not what are the counter imaginations by the people who are engaging with? For example, how people and workers are responding to such 'burdens' of responsibility to contribute to nation building through imposed self-entrepreneurism? The fact that Indian organized sector and job security becoming a past nostalgia is pointing to the entire process mapped out by the author which makes the last question relevant
This book helps me to find out the connection between my research ideas such as how technology is a significant factor in all levels of employment from blue collar to IT employees, how their lived experience, defence and work life and dramatically changed after the coming of globalization. This book analyses how gendered work is exploited in the name of women emancipation and freedom, it also scrutinizes the ideas behind economic liberalism and its impact on worker's or employee's life. As a comparative study of workers in garment, electronics, BPO and IT-enabled works, this book is a good navigation for my future research and it is also a great resource in both methodological and data-wise understanding. The chapter on IT sector, which is named as 'neither mental nor manual labour, the service factories of the new economy' absolutely shows the dilemma, stress and confusion attached to the Indian service sector and its exploitation of cheap insecure labour.