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Industrial Conflict, the Quality of Worklife, and the Productivity Slowdown in U.S. Manufacturing

  • Michele I. Naples
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    Productivity analysis generally omits the study of labor performed per labor hour hired. It therefore fails to identify two important determinants of productivity: workplace conflict and industrial accidents. Consideration of the effect of deteriorating work relation s increases the proportion of the variance of productivity growth explained for 1951-80 by 37 percent above technical models; and social-relations variables alone explain almost two-thirds of the productivity slowdown of 1973-80. The seemingly small impact of the energy crisis is also clarified: the labor-effort/labor-hours distinction implies that the energy/labor ratio is subject to measurement error.

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    File URL: http://college.holycross.edu/RePEc/eej/Archive/Volume14/V14N2P157_166.pdf
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    Article provided by Eastern Economic Association in its journal Eastern Economic Journal.

    Volume (Year): 14 (1988)
    Issue (Month): 2 (Apr-Jun)
    Pages: 157-166

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    Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:14:y:1988:i:2:p:157-166
    Contact details of provider: Postal: c/o Dr. Alexandre Olbrecht, The Anisfield School of Business 205, Ramapo College, 505 Ramapo Valley Road, Ramapo, New Jersey 07430, USA
    Phone: (201) 684-7346
    Web page: http://www.ramapo.edu/eea/journal.html
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    1. Brown, Charles & Medoff, James, 1978. "Trade Unions in the Production Process," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(3), pages 355-78, June.
    2. Walter Y. Oi, 1962. "Labor as a Quasi-Fixed Factor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 538.
    3. Martin Neil Baily, 1981. "Productivity and the Services of Capital and Labor," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(1), pages 1-66.
    4. Lazear, Edward P, 1981. "Agency, Earnings Profiles, Productivity, and Hours Restrictions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(4), pages 606-20, September.
    5. Robert J. Gordon, 1980. "The "End-of-Expansion" Phenomenon in Short-run Productivity Behavior," NBER Working Papers 0427, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Bowles, Samuel, 1985. "The Production Process in a Competitive Economy: Walrasian, Neo-Hobbesian, and Marxian Models," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 16-36, March.
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