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Labor aspects of internationalization: Multinational corporations and employment relations in the United States and Germany

Posted on:2005-10-22Degree:Ph.DType:Thesis
University:Temple UniversityCandidate:Anastasakos, VasilikiFull Text:PDF
GTID:2456390008490273Subject:Political science
This study attempts to make a meaningful contribution to our understanding of multinational corporate behavior, particularly those aspects that impact work and employment relations---the systems governing such matters as the rights of workers, union, and managers; the nature of work practices; compensation practices; and the structure and mechanisms of union representation. It examines firm-level employment relations in two major cross-border merger/acquisition (M&A) cases in the automobile (Daimler/Chrysler) and banking sectors (Deutsche Bank/Bankers Trust) between German and American multinational firms.; One of the key arguments in this study is that, contrary to the neo-liberal thesis, the increased internationalization of firms through mergers and acquisitions does not automatically lead to firm-level employment relations convergence to a single business model.{09}This is due to the fact that, despite globalization, national institutions of labor relations continue to remain distinct among advanced capitalist economies and global firms remain largely rooted in the social and institutional context of their country of origin. However, M&As create cross pressure---each system exerting enough pressure on the firm not simply to change but to change at a faster pace. The result is not convergence but hybridization, a more complex process of employment relations change that combines elements of global "best practices" as well as practices from the U.S. and German business models. The degree and nature of hybridization varies across firms based not only on corporate strategy or management decisions but on organized labor's position within each firm.; The study presents evidence supporting the thesis that, contrary to dominant neo-liberal arguments and oversimplified popular understanding, globalization is not necessarily a zero-sum game between employers and workers and its effects are not always preordained or predetermined. Organized labor, rather than being a passive participant in the process of globalization, often plays a significant role in determining employment relations outcomes disproving the ominous predictions regarding its demise.
Keywords/Search Tags:Employment relations, Multinational, Labor
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