Production, Profits, and People
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The landscape of work is changing at breakneck speed. New technologies are having a drastic impact on the types of work we do, the skills we need and the way work is organized. Business strategy is taking advantage of digital technologies, globalization and the increasing irrelevance of government regulation to devise new systems of coordination and control that challenge our assumptions about what constitutes a firm or an employee. This program looks at the ways new technologies and management strategies are changing how work gets done, who is hired to do it, and how the very concept of employment is being redefined. We will look at these issues from three perspectives, the individual company, the individual worker and society overall.
In this program we will examine some of the key issues emerging from the new world of work. These include outsourcing and the permanent use of temp workers, the rise of the gig economy, the challenge and promise of diversity, and the intensification of pay inequalities within and between firms. We will also look at how new technologies and the decline of unions have altered the way work is organized and managed. To view these issues from a business perspective, we will use a textbook in human resource management and other management-oriented readings, but we will also look at critiques that take into account economic and social consequences and hear from guest speakers with direct experience.
Student work will include weekly writing that responds to and integrates the readings and other program material. There will be a culminating assignment at the end of the quarter in which student teams will analyze how changes in employment systems have affected particular organizations in the Olympia area. By the end of the program, students will be prepared for further work in business studies, public policy and political economy.
This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in:
business management, public policy, political economy, sociology, and human resources.
Class Size: 25
25% Reserved for Freshmen
Scheduled for: Day
Final schedule and room assignments:
First meeting:Tuesday, September 25, 2018 - 10:00 am
Tuesday - Friday, 10 am until 1 pm (Wed., Thurs.), 3 pm (Friday) or 5 pm (Tuesday)
Located in: Olympia