Alternative to Lean Production: Work Organization in the Swedish Auto Industry
Christian Berggren asks whether the mass production of manufactured goods can be adjusted to meet human needs & fit human capacities. In the heyday of classical "Fordism," workers were subjected to intense time pressure to perform highly repetitive, physically demanding work, & Berggren challenges the contention that the character of the work is substantially improved by "Toyotism."Swedish auto industry has developed a distinctly different production design & work organization, exploring alternatives to the assembly line & to the traditional shop-floor hierarchy. Swedish model of teamwork increased independent decision making & elicited strong union commitment. But how successful has this model been?
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The AssemblyLine Regime and the Volvo Trajectory
The Evolution and Transplantation of Toyotism
SmallScale Car Makers
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areas assembly line assembly plants assembly workers auto industry automation autonomy blue-collar workers Boras Boris buffers buses central chassis assembly complete concept contrast cycle demands direct influence division employees example factory firms flexible flow Fordist foreman Ghent Gothenburg group organization important increased industrial engineers industrial sociology innovation integrated intensity Japan Kalmar Katrineholm labor market lean production line assembly long-cycle manufacturing materials handling monotonous Nissan NUMMI operations organizational pace percent performance personnel turnover physical strains planning position possible pressure problems production design production system questions repetitive responsibility result Saab Scania significant skill social standard stations strategy structure studies suppliers Sweden Swedish auto tasks teamwork technical Torslanda Toyota trade union traditional transplants Trollhattan Uddevalla union influence United variation vehicles Volvo Buses Volvo Cars Volvo Trucks wage system workplace