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Lookup NU author(s): Professor Alan McKinlay
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In the period 1945-1970 Scotland received the greatest inflow of American direct investment in the world, outside Canada. The presence of American multinational companies was welcomed by both the local and the national state as providing examples of best business practice in production methods and in the deployment of labour. All of these incoming firms were anti- union in principle, but in practice they enjoyed little success in eliminating craft sensibilities or union loyalties. There was no wholesale corporate colonization of workers' language or identities. This has often been seen as a result of official trade unionism's success in manipulating labour shortages, labour process structures and bonus systems. By utilizing factory records, which show the day-to-day reality of industrial relations in US firms, we argue that recognition of trade unionism and collective bargaining owed as much, if not more, to grassroots pressure. This in time became the vital factor in shaping the domestication of American multinationals' labour practices.
Author(s): Knox W, McKinlay A
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Labor History
Print publication date: 27/05/2010
ISSN (print): 0023-656X
ISSN (electronic): 1469-9702
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