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Workers' intervention authority in Italian 4.0 factories: autonomy and discretion

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  • Valeria Cirillo
  • Matteo Rinaldini
  • Jacopo Staccioli
  • Maria Enrica Virgillito

Abstract

The present contribution aims at investigating the relationship between the introduction of Industry 4.0 technological innovations and the ensuing implications for workers' skills composition, their empowerment, and their authority of intervention in the work process, within three Italian firms exhibiting a wide range of organisational practices: from Japanese Toyotism, to a mix of Taylorism and co-determination, up to the example most akin to the German 'Mitbestimmung'. By distinguishing between the notions of discretion and autonomy in identifying the spheres of workers' intervention authority, our findings corroborate the presence of hybrid workforce empowerment, reflected into an increase of workers' discretionary intervention, and the lack of a similar increase in terms of autonomy, the latter meant as the possibility of establishing their own routines.

Suggested Citation

  • Valeria Cirillo & Matteo Rinaldini & Jacopo Staccioli & Maria Enrica Virgillito, 2018. "Workers' intervention authority in Italian 4.0 factories: autonomy and discretion," LEM Papers Series 2018/13, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:ssa:lemwps:2018/13
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maury Gittleman & Michael Horrigan & Mary Joyce, 1998. "“Flexible†Workplace Practices: Evidence from a Nationally Representative Survey," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(1), pages 99-115, October.
    2. Luisa Corazza, 2015. "Il World Class Manufacturing nello specchio del diritto del lavoro," Economia & lavoro, Carocci editore, issue 3, pages 79-90.
    3. Alexander K. Koch & Julia Nafziger, 2012. "Job Assignments under Moral Hazard: The Peter Principle Revisited," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(4), pages 1029-1059, December.
    4. Jaime Ortega, 2001. "Job Rotation as a Learning Mechanism," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(10), pages 1361-1370, October.
    5. Dosi, Giovanni & Marengo, Luigi, 2015. "The dynamics of organizational structures and performances under diverging distributions of knowledge and different power structures," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(3), pages 535-559, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Armanda Cetrulo & Dario Guarascio & Maria Enrica Virgillito, 2019. "Anatomy of the Italian occupational structure: concentrated power and distributed knowledge," LEM Papers Series 2019/34, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    2. Fabio Montobbio & Jacopo Staccioli & Maria Enrica Virgillito & Marco Vivarelli, 2020. "Robots and the origin of their labour saving impact," DISCE - Quaderni del Dipartimento di Politica Economica dipe0009, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Dipartimenti e Istituti di Scienze Economiche (DISCE).
    3. Valeria Cirillo & José Molero Zayas, 2019. "Digitalizing industry? Labor, technology and work organization: an introduction to the Forum," Economia e Politica Industriale: Journal of Industrial and Business Economics, Springer;Associazione Amici di Economia e Politica Industriale, vol. 46(3), pages 313-321, September.
    4. Angelo Moro & Matteo Rinaldini & Jacopo Staccioli & Maria Enrica Virgillito, 2019. "Control in the era of surveillance capitalism: an empirical investigation of Italian Industry 4.0 factories," Economia e Politica Industriale: Journal of Industrial and Business Economics, Springer;Associazione Amici di Economia e Politica Industriale, vol. 46(3), pages 347-360, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Industry 4.0; Technological Paradigms; Organisational Change; Lean Systems; Autonomy; Discretion;

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