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The restructuring of work in Germany

almost exclusively to the level of individual workplaces and firms, the German debate has been more difficult for political players to constrain and limit. The German programme has relied upon the involvement and participation of the social partners in a kind of flexi-corporatism of traded bargains in order to embed restructuring within regulatory frameworks. Where we see the formulation of apparently hyperflexible deregulatory policies, these are subject to the tumult of industrial relations practices, and are frequently abandoned or moderated beyond recognition. This

in Globalisation contested
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The restructuring of work and production in the international political economy

be defined as a kind of interdependent diplomacy (see Walter, 1998), particularly in terms of the state’s attraction of FDI. Attention to firm-society relations is similarly confined to a focus on the imperatives of restructuring for lean and flexible productive and working practices. What are the limitations of this mode of knowledge about the firm? The idea that the firm has become a new unit of analysis in the study of the world political economy invokes, paradoxically, similar criticisms to those levelled at traditional international relations frameworks in

in Globalisation contested

others condemn it), both liberal and neoMarxist theorists share common ground on the extent of global change. Among the more extreme formulations we read that: ‘The nation-state has become an unnatural, even dysfunctional, unit for organizing human activity and managing economic endeavour in a borderless world’ (Ohmae, 1990: 93). The dissolution of state authority and the rise of marketised frameworks of authority are presented as imperative transformations in a globalisation process. Fundamental breaks with the past are staked out and labelled in diverse ways, though

in Globalisation contested
The restructuring of work in Britain

representation of a deregulated and FDI-attracting ‘model’ has been made possible. Within this question, the first step is to consider the central dynamics of the meanings that have been attributed to globalisation in governing British state-society. A unique and particular set of stories about the ‘global’ arena are told and retold to enable a programme of hyperflexibility to be perpetuated. The first significant face of the making of a ‘global Britain’ is, perhaps paradoxically, one in which government (in the sense of legislative and regulatory functions) is distanced from

in Globalisation contested