Economic Theory, Public Policy and the Challenge of Innovative Work Practices

Economic and Industrial Democracy: An International Journal, Vol. 23, pp. 271-290, 2002

Posted: 17 Jan 2010

Date Written: 2002

Abstract

A fundamental finding of the current empirical industrial relations and human resource management research is that similar types of firms producing similar types of products adopt different sets of work practices or cultures even when working under the same institutional environment. Only a small minority of firms has adopted superior, often more cooperative work cultures. In sharp contrast to neoclassical theory, which predicts the dominance of the more efficient work cultures, a behavioural model of the firm presented here reveals that even under conditions of competitive product markets, firms can produce competitively using either the traditional, less efficient work cultures or the more efficient cooperative work cultures. The superior work cultures need not dominate simply as a consequence of market forces.

Keywords: Economic Theory, Public Policy, Innovation, Work Practices, Human Resources, Firms, Market forces

JEL Classification: O31, D00

Suggested Citation

Altman, Morris, Economic Theory, Public Policy and the Challenge of Innovative Work Practices (2002). Economic and Industrial Democracy: An International Journal, Vol. 23, pp. 271-290, 2002. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1536826

Morris Altman (Contact Author)

University of Newcastle ( email )

University Drive
Callaghan, NSW 2308
Australia

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