Title: Science, technology and work organization

Authors: Jean J. Chanaron, Jacques Perrin

Addresses: Research Fellow in Economics in the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and researcher in the Research Institute for Economic Development and Planning, Grenoble University, France; currently visiting fellow at the University of Manchester (PREST), UK ' Research Fellow in Economics in the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and researcher in the Research Institute for Economic Development and Planning, Grenoble University, France; currently visiting fellow at the University of Sussex (SPRU), UK

Abstract: The relationship between technology and work organization is neither direct nor one-way. Science has a tendency to interfere in this relationship. So, are the dominant paradigms of the time – for example, mechanical science during the first Industrial Revolution, information science today – the key to understanding all technologies, including organization technology? To the mechanistic affiliation of the Taylor scientific management would correspond information affiliation of the new forms of work organization; the quality circle is an example of this. Nevertheless, the coexistence of these two work organization systems in firms raises questions: are they compatible or contradictory? The introduction of computer-aided design and manufacturing systems reproduces in new forms the separation between production and design.

Keywords: Taylorism; work organization; scientific management; quality circles; technical change; computer science; software; computer-aided design; CAD; computer-aided manufacturing; CAM; CADCAM.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.1987.026135

International Journal of Technology Management, 1987 Vol.2 No.3/4, pp.377 - 389

Available online: 27 May 2009 *

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