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Title: Limits to adoption : a comparative study of Japanese work systems and their operation in the U.K.
Author: Saka, Ayse
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2001
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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.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Muğla Üniversitesi
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD Industries. Land use. Labor