The Myth of Japanese Efficiency: The World Car Industry in a Globalizing Age
Combining case studies with accessible but rigorous production models and historical background, this provocative book challenges accepted views on Japanese production methods in the world car industry.
The book argues that the 'lean and flexible' production model popularly associated with Toyota MC is a myth, but one which sheds light on cultural responses to the attendant stresses of globalization. To illustrate this, Dan Coffey provides individual studies of process flexibility, labour productivity and the re-organization of work in the global car industry. Wider evaluations of Japanese impacts on the global economy and a resurgent Western capitalism are then made, progressing the case for a fundamental re-assessment of the narratives informing popular accounts of Japan's manufacturing success. Beginning with the fictionalization of history and propagation of empirical counterfactuals and finishing with observations on the wider impact of the 'lean and flexible' approach, the bold and controversial conclusion reacheld by the author is that what is at stake is our understanding of the form and meaning of 'production fantasy'.
The Myth of Japanese Efficiency casts a familiar debate in an unfamiliar light. It will strongly appeal to management and business strategy academics, political economists and industrial sociologists interested in the debate on Fordist versus 'post-Fordist' production methods/'lean and flexible' manufacture and Japanese post-war success in the world market for manufactured goods. Human resource management specialists interested in best production practice will also find much to interest them within this book.
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But the view that Japan's car assemblers , led by Toyota , were proving to be highly flexible operators in the organization of the interface between factory and market gained serious currency amongst Western commentators in the middle ...
In this regard , however , what is almost as noteworthy as the weight given to a narrative account of a shift from mass production to lean and flexible factories is that the nuances attached by commentators , on the Western side at ...
[ and ] to the degree to which use of flexible general - purpose equipment increases , the necessity of vertical integration decreases ' . ' To what extent this type of rationale can be extended to account for a shift in perspectives ...
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Introducing the myth of Japanese efficiency
a myth encountered
the BMWRover Group controversy
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