Work in Progress in the Social Studies (WIPSS): 2016/7
20th ANNIVERSARY YEAR
Tuesday 10 January:
Fordist or Post-Fordist?
Manufacturing Firms in Malta analysed through Economic Sociology
University of Malta
The second half of the 20th Century saw Malta transitioning from a colony dependent on its colonial power to a sovereign nation-state. Such a shift, partially and initially, came through a strategy prioritising an export-led type of industrialisation fuelled by foreign investment. A number of such multinational companies still hold a presence in Malta, albeit in a number of cases these being physiognomically distinct from their original state. This study firstly aims to sociologically look at the industrial organisation, evolving or otherwise, of said manufacturing companies in terms of ‘the Fordist’ and ‘the post-Fordist’. It is secondly concerned with the relationships and practices they hold with locally-owned SMEs, which would represent a possible overcoming of a rigid and classical dual economy composed on the one hand of the foreign-owned company, and the domestic SME on the other. These concerns are dealt with by presenting a set of evolving scenarios involving two comparable foreign-owned cases and nine small local enterprises acting as support-enterprises to the cases. The findings reveal a diachronic interplay between environmental structural constraints on and agency-driven action by the case studies, as well as divergent interfirm practices contingent on the particularities of the firms and the histories of the relationships.
Dylan Cassar has completed an undergraduate and a Master’s degree in sociology at the University of Malta. His academic and research interests lie in the political economy and economic sociology of development with particular attention to transitioning and emerging economies.
Tuesday 10 January, 1800-1900hrs, followed by discussion at the Faculty of Arts Library.
Convenors: Paul Clough, Peter Mayo, Michael Briguglio.
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