Limits to adoption : a comparative study of Japanese work systems and their operation in the U.K.
Saka, Ayse (2001) Limits to adoption : a comparative study of Japanese work systems and their operation in the U.K. PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
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Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1378510~S15
This dissertation presents a multilevel comparative approach to investigating the degree
to which Japanese knowledge-driven work systems are implemented and internalised in
the UK business system. The focus is on processural and structural limits to accepting
structural, cultural, control-related and technological practices of Japanese multinational
corporations. The study addresses the national and local institutional, organisational and
group levels in order to consider the contextual embeddedness of work systems. There is
an interest in examining the interplay between the context and process of diffusion.
Whitley's (1999) work on divergent capitalisms is furthered here by linking structures to
micro-level social action in which they are implicated.
The study is based on qualitative case studies that systematically compare the ways in
which Japanesek nowledge-driven work systemsa re adoptedi n two UK subsidiary firms
and an Aglo-Japanese technical collaboration. It draws on 73 semi-structured interviews
conducted in the UK and Japan between August 1998 and April 2000, participant
observation carried out in the subsidiary firms over one week and factory tours in Japan.
The study concludes that firms face a double barrier in the adoption of work systems in
the form of, first, institutional embeddedness at the national level, and second,
embeddedness of tacit work systems at the firm level. Nationally distinct social
institutions show divergence in business systems across countries and local institutions
point to divergence within a particular national business system. Organisational and
group characteristics highlight the role of actors (management initiatives and
interpretation of alternative work systems by adopters). The research findings suggest
that firms attempt to locally interpret alternative work systems rather than submit to
environmental pressures towards isomorphism. There is an enactment through social
patterns of interaction in organisations, hence a variation in actors' response to similar
practices and procedures diffused from highly institutionalised settings.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor|
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Manufacturing industries -- Japan -- Case studies, Automobile industry and trade -- Great Britain -- Case studies, Manufacturing processes|
|Official Date:||December 2001|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Warwick Business School|
|Supervisor(s)/Advisor:||Swan, Jacky ; Morgan, Glenn|
|Extent:||xiii, 380 leaves|
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