The networked organisation
Implications for jobs and inequality
in Making work more equal

The growing importance of decentralized production networks in recent decades has led to a blurring of organizational boundaries and the fragmenting or ‘fissuring’ of work. The outsourcing of work from lead firms to contractor firms creates opportunities for firms in a production network to cooperate in producing goods and services. But this impulse may be undermined by capital-capital conflict over the distribution of value created by the network as each firm seeks to enhance its position and its claims. Labor-capital conflict over the division of net revenue between wages and profit now takes place in the context of this capital-capital conflict. Older forms of labor market segmentation persist, but are now overlaid by new forms of segmentation related to the employer’s position in the network. Jill Rubery and her colleagues were among the first to draw attention to these developments in the UK. This chapter examines Jill’s important and original contributions to our understanding of the effects of outsourcing on work and workers. We review this work as well as recent studies published in the decade since the release of her co-authored book, Fragmenting Work: Blurring Organizational Boundaries and Disordering Hierarchies. We conclude with a discussion of directions for future research.

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Making work more equal

A new labour market segmentation approach


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