Tag: labour

From John Harris in the Guardian: Whatever his suitability for the job, Corbyn is where he is for one reason above all others: the fact that Britain’s post-1979 journey into a new reality of a shrunken welfare state, marketised public services, rising inequality and an impossible job market had reached a watershed with the deepening […]

A really interesting BuzzFeed article about the use of smart phones on building sites to increase efficiency (the 30% of on-site time that is regarded idle, for reasons attributed to ‘miscommunication and disorganisation’) and their implications for workplace surveillance. What’s particularly striking is that inefficiencies are often the result of the complex subcontracting arrangements now […]

In The New Ruthless Economy, by Simon Head, there’s a great discussion of the expansion of bureaucracy in American healthcare. From loc 1728-1737: Between 1968 and 1993, the number of managers and administrators tors in U.S. health care rose fourfold from 719,000 to 2,792,000, outstripping the growth in the number of physicians, which less than […]

From The New Ruthless Economy, by Simon Head, loc 1209. I wonder what ‘innovations’ have emerged in the ten years since this was book was published? There are at least five distinct types of monitoring software. First, there are what might be called “classic” monitoring products, software that embodies the Taylorist preoccupation with timing and […]

From The New Ruthless Economy, by Simon Head, loc 630-647. Taylor’s  experience of industrial resistance to his methods led him to replace this participatory aspect with an elaborate system of inspection and control: But perhaps the most important portant contribution of Japanese manufacturers to the theory and practice tice of scientific management has been to […]

From The New Ruthless Economy, by Simon Head, loc 704: Soft flexibility ibility involves changes to the appearance and styling of a product, such as occurred on the auto assembly line at Nissan, with its variety of dashboards, boards, seats, radios, and carpets. This flexibility can easily be accommodated modated by a work regime that […]

Earlier today I started reading Blacklisted, an account of the extensive blacklisting in the construction industry that was exposed by an investigation by the Information Commissioner. For those unfamiliar with the case: In 2009, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) exposed details of a large-scale surveillance operation run by a company called The Consulting Association.  This […]

From this article (don’t read it yet though!): “barely capable of distinguishing themselves from the consuming desire to work at all times” “neurotic people who deploy a series of practices that coincide quite neatly with the requirements of the neoliberal, predatory, continually mutating capitalism of the every moment” “people who behave, communicate, and innovate in […]