The shift of value production away from traditional concerns with capital, land and labor, toward more 'immaterial' resources such as knowledge, renders many of the old techniques and methods of management and work organization redundant. New forms of accounting for intangibles are necessary, as are new methods of control and supervision in more distributed forms of organization and work.
This module will focus on the emerging realities of management, organization and work within this new economy. Rather than a sanitized vision of the knowledge-intensive firm where everyone is equal, empowered, highly educated and self-actualizing in autonomous, networked organizations, this reality is often characterized by intrusive forms of managerial control, intensified surveillance, routinization and Taylorism, an increasing precariousness of employment and career, and a retrenchment in the gendered division of labor. Indeed, for many the engines of the 'new' economy are not knowledge and brainwork, but the high-volume, low-cost sweatshops found both in developing countries and in the cities of the global North.
By focusing upon the wider context within which these organizational and management challenges are arising, this module will prepare students for the new realities of work and management by paying attention to the full range of developments in organization.