Flexible Labour Practices And Poor Work Economics Essay

“ Globalization is on every organic structure ‘s lips ; a craze word fast turning into a motto, a charming conjuration, a pass-key meant to unlock the Gatess to all present and future enigmas. For some ‘globalization ‘ is what we are bound to make if we wish to be happy ; for others ‘globalization ‘ is the cause of our sadness. ” ( Bauman, 1998 ) There are tonss of mists attached to globalisation which unveil the effects to the human status. It is hard to mensurate the impact of globalisation on the whole society so the focal point of this essay will unveil if hapless work patterns and flexible labor patterns are consequence of globalisation or non. But it is of import to stress the fact that globalisation is non a new phenomenon ; it existed earlier even in the signifier of exchange of goods across the states. Globalization can be defined as the phenomenon to turn our universe to a boundary-less universe. Giddens ( 1990:4 ) “ describe globalisation as the intensification of global societal dealingss which link distant vicinities in such a manner that local go oning are shaped by events happening many mile off and frailty versa ” . ( Debrah and Ian, 2002 ) An of import facet to look into while replying the inquiry is whether globalisation taking to unity/prosperity or it is taking us back to 18th century to the beginning of sweatshop? Poor work can be defined with the illustration of sweatshop. Sweatshop is a work topographic point and labor system in which labour faces long on the job hours, occupation insecurity, rough working conditions, low rewards, safety misdemeanor, inhumane intervention with employees and employees working in impermanent illegal workplaces. All this come under the definition of hapless work. Sweatshop is an utmost illustration of what economic experts call “ flexible specialised production. ” Flexible labor pattern is “ a generic term ” for employment patterns that is differentiated from the traditional norms in footings of the hours worked, length of contract, or the topographic point of work. ( need to cite this )

Flexible Labour Practices and Poor work

It is non merely the globalisation that affects the market so that it tends to alter. Assortment of sentiments from assorted schools of idea exists over the rise in employment flexibleness. The best illustrations could be the international oil crises of the 70s, lifting unemployment rates in the 80s, the failure to utilize demand-side Keynesian political relations to din economic growing, the neo-liberal harsh schemes to cull brotherhoods, the re-surfacing of microeconomics theoretical accounts, the rise in female employment etc. ( Standing, 1999 cited in Bernardi, 2001 ) .

Flexibility enabled manufacturers to set supply to demand fleetly and reduced the hazards involved in long-run investings. It besides allowed them to spread out to run into fresh demand and retract during ruins. Manufacturers tend avoid brotherhood regulations and legal ordinances and limitations that fix rewards, worker-benefits, and conditions by working in concealed stores and traveling often. Sweated labour systems shift the societal duty of production to society. They create a secondary labour market, which normally is composed of the most vulnerable of workers like immigrants ( normally illegal ) , immature adult females, and the undereducated. Somewhat same is go oning in globalisation: as many research workers blamed the exponential addition in the in-migration on it. Poor work seems to be pretty prevalent in developing states such as India and China. In these states the hapless work seems to be in multinationals and large makers as good though there are Torahs which protect employees and international labor criterions but outsourced mills barely pay attentivenesss to these criterions. As in globalisation it can be said the richer is going richer and the poorer is going poorer.

In order to extinguish these inhumane conditions, reformer motions focused on three tined scheme: back uping labour brotherhoods, a really rigorous province sponsored cheque and balance system that better regulated the economic system, and an informed consumer through national consumer motions.

In France they have imposed corporate decrease in working clip to make more occupations to contend unemployment and at the same clip assisting making a balance between work and household life. ( Fagnani and Letablier, 2004 ) .

Globalization frequently poses serious menaces to the local labour markets as the function of trade brotherhoods is minimized due to the impacts of the alteration in the planetary markets on local markets. It is frequently referred to the “ race to the underside ” for employment conditions.

Several reformer motions charge that neo-liberal globalisation is similar to the perspiration system. They present statement that there is a “ race to the underside ” , as multinationals jump from one low-wage state to another in fling of low-production-costs merely like the jumpers would hold steered production to the lowest cost sub-contractor.

Anti-globalization militants and conservationists besides regret and resist transportation of heavy industrial fabrication ( such as chemical production ) to the underdeveloped universe. Although chemical mills have small in common with sweatshops in the original sense but oppositions describe them as one of the sweatshops and claim that there are negative environmental and wellness impacts ( such as pollution and birth defects etc ) . Example of mining workers in Nigeria working for large company like Shell are working in terrible and unhealthy conditions impacting their lives.

Developing states like Pakistan, India and China promote the outsourcing of work from the developed universe to mills within their boundary lines so that they generate employment for their people and net incomes for their employers along with roar in their economic systems. The displacement of production units to developing states is portion of the procedure known as globalisation, but may besides be described as neoliberal globalisation to lucubrate the function that free market economic sciences dramas in outsourcing.

Assorted groups support the anti-sweatshop motion today. The National Labor Committee brought sweatshops into the mainstream media in the 1990s when it exposed the usage of sweatshop and child labour to run up Kathie Lee Gifford ‘s Wal-Mart label. The most celebrated illustration of usage of kid labor was in Nike mill production in China, which was exposed by the media to the universe, which affected the trade name image and affected the gross revenues of the trade name, because of utilizing inhumane and child labors to bring forth the goods. “ Apple has disclosed in its Supplier Responsibility 2009 Progress Report that some of its original equipment makers in China were involved in bad labour patterns. Apple said that of the 83 OEMs which make iPhones and iPods in China, 45 did non pay the workers for overtime and 23 paid their employees less than the local lower limit salary criterion. Apple stated that since 2007, Apple has been carry oning reviews of the employee working conditions in its OEMs and is taking steps to better the work environment ” . ( www.chinasourcingnews.com ) this is where the function of international labour criterion will assist better the working status across the universe.

Why, so, do adult females workers endure these conditions with seemingly small protest? And why do those who claim to hold the workers ‘ involvements at bosom resist the thought of utilizing internationally enforced countenance to better their labor criterions? ( Kabeer, 2004 ) The replies to these inquiries rest on the life of Bangladeshi adult females before taking the present occupations in the epoch of globalisation. In the survey by Naila Kabeer ( 2004 ) on Bangladeshi adult females shows that they are satisfied with their work as it pays them good as compared to the old criterions. It is paying them rewards on regular bases that boosts the assurance in them. It provides them the chance of socialising and gives them autonomy that was n’t existing antecedently. Along with all those it gives them some voice in determination devising at place that was supposed to be the adult male domain antecedently. ( Nazli Kibria 1995 ; Zohir and Paul-Majumder 1996 ; Sajeeda Amin, Ian Diamond, Ruchira T. Naved, and Margaret Newby 1998 ; Margaret Newby 1998 ; Kabeer 2004 ; Paul-Majumder and Begum 2000 ; Dannecker 2002 ; Kabeer and Mahmud, forthcoming cited in Kabeer, 2004 ) In sweatshop the work was done in illegal topographic points, but now in the epoch of globalisation the inhumane conditions still precede but now they done in the outsourced mills of Multinational Corporation. Some patterns seem to be similar to the patterns and conditions of the sweatshop in the development states in this boundaryless universe.

The consequence of globalization on society can be summoned in two points: the addition in employment flexibleness and lessening in unskilled fabrication employment.

Castells ( 1996 ) , the relation between globalization and structural alterations in the labor market is that the globalization has made possible and encouraged an extended restructuring of houses and administrations. In making so, the globalization procedure has besides introduced a displacement in the bargaining power between capital and labor, in favor of the first. With regard to the rise in employment flexibleness, i.e. the diffusion of fixed-term contracts, developing contracts and semi-independent signifiers of employment, the impact of globalization can be understood in two ways.

The diffusion of new information engineering has produced deep alterations in the production processes of goods and services. Automation and the Computers have set the new criterions in the production. ( Soskice, 1999 cited in Bernardi, 2001 )

The addition in economic mutuality in capital and goods/services markets has enabled directors ‘ hunt for more flexibleness in employment relationships to confront international competition and adapt fleetly to tough markets ( Treu 1992 cited in Bernardi, 2001 ) .

There seem to be a displacement from fabricating industry to more into services industry. Manufacturing / production industry is more on the flexible labour employment. “ However, that some signifier of flexible employment such as adviser contracts are besides distributing into the service category ” . ( Bernardi, 2001 )

Unemployment and the loss of occupations in developed states are slightly by and large linked with globalisation. The Reason is that transnational corporations are traveling their mills to developing states. Due to the addition alteration in engineering has resulted in more occupation losingss.

The proportion of parttime employment varies greatly, from highs in the Netherlands ( 36.5 % ) , Iceland ( 27.9 % ) , Switzerland ( 27.4 % ) and Norway ( 26.5 % ) to depressions in Hungary ( 4.9 % ) , Greece ( 5 % ) , the Czech Republic ( 5.9 % ) and Italy ( 6.6 % ) .

Park to about all OECD states – Turkey being the lone exclusion – is that part-timers are chiefly adult females. Women ‘s portion in parttime work is the largest in Luxembourg ( 88 % ) , Belgium ( 87.4 % ) , the United Kingdom ( 86 % ) and Austria ( 84.2 % ) . ( OECD, Employment Outlook 1997. )

In the EU, 32 % of entire female employment is parttime, compared to the 5 % work forces. The Netherlands is far in front, with 69 % of the female work force in parttime employment. In Belgium, Germany and Luxembourg, the rate of parttime employment of adult females is some 10 times that of work forces. Of the 124.8 million people with a full-time occupation in the EU, merely tierce are adult females. Globalization has lead to inequality among gender.

EU parttime workers normally work less than 31 hours a hebdomad, but 10 % work more than that. In Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK, around a one-fourth of parttime occupations are under 11 hours per hebdomad. In these states, plus Sweden, France and Portugal, 10 % of parttime workers have a 2nd occupation.

In the EU, parttime work is highest in distribution ( 20 % of entire employment ) , hotels and eating houses ( 25 % ) and other services ( 29 % ) . Over half of those employed in other services in the Netherlands work portion clip, about one-half in Sweden and the UK, and about one-third in Denmark

The spread between the low quality occupations with low wage and high quality occupation with high wage is increasing in OECD states. ( European Commission, 2001 cited in Green et.al, 2008 ) Low quality occupations are linked with flexible and non-standard occupations. ( European Commission, 2003 ; Hall et.al, 2000 cited in Green et.al, 2008 )

Flexible contracts help keep balance between work and household life. A really good illustration is of female UK parttime workers, they reported higher degrees occupation satisfaction than full-time opposite number. ( Booth and Van Ours, 2008 cited in Green et.al 2008 ) Same instance is reported between Australian female part-time opposite numbers, they reported high grade of occupation satisfaction every bit good, demoing that globalisation has facilitated the female on the job category with tonss of fiscal every bit good as non-financial benefits. In Australia some workers are working over 60 hours per hebdomad which is the 2nd highest among the developed states. ( ACTU, 2001 cited in Green et.al, 2008 ) Harmonizing to Booth et.al ( 2002 ) found that flexible contract workers were by and large paid less, received less preparation and were less satisfied. ( Green et.al, 2008 ) On the other manus lasting employees are given preparation and compensation benefit along with occupation security.


It can be said that for some globalisation has been the cause of felicity and for others it has been the cause of uncomfortableness. In instance of the survey on Bangladeshi adult females working in garment industry were happy and satisfied with their regular income. Globalization has become cause of sadness for many persons and households because it leads to unemployment. Unemployment has given rise to flexible employment. Mostly adult females seem to be employed in flexible labor contracts. Flexible employment leads to occupation dissatisfaction and incorporate some elements of hapless work which are low rewards, long working hours, less brotherhood control. Globalization has lead to alter in labour market conditions which has given rise to the flexible employment. The other of import thing to look back into is that the hapless working status has been raised by the affects of globalisation and free market mechanism but it is n’t the lone exclusive ground for these inhumane status ; other factors such as economic sciences, competition, labour market conditions, unemployment and the criterion of work already in developing states has an impact every bit good. But the inquiry arises as how to better these working conditions, particularly in states like China and Bangladesh where there are truly hapless working conditions. International labour Torahs criterions need to be placed in developing states but in a friendly manner, the forced infliction of it wo n’t assist to better the criterions. The aid of developed states will be needed in order for these Torahs to be placed in an effectual manner.