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  • 1.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Occupational science.
    Digitalisering och arbetskvalitet: Två kvalitativa fallstudier inom svensk tillverkningsindustri2020In: Arbetsmarknad & Arbetsliv, ISSN 1400-9692, Vol. 26, no 1, p. 90-108Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Vilken betydelse har digitaliseringen för anställdas arbetskvalitet? I denna studie av två tillverkningsföretag inom svensk flygindustri visas hur detta är beroende av ledningens val av innovationsstrategi. I det ena företaget var strategin att genom digital teknik involvera flera kategorier av anställda i gemensamt beslutsfattande om konstruktioner och arbetsinstruktioner, vilket samtidigt både begränsade deras möjligheter att fatta beslut om det egna arbetet och ökade arbetstakten. I det andra företaget var strategin att genom digital teknik endast involvera en viss kategori av anställda i mer övergripande frågor, varvid en annan kategori av anställda inte bara uteslöts, utan också fick mindre beslutsutrymme när det gällde det egna arbetet.

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  • 2.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Malmö universitet.
    Integrative Strategy, Competitiveness and Employment: a Case Study of the Transition at the Swedish Truck Manufacturing Company Scania During the Economic Downturn in 2008-20102015In: Economic and Industrial Democracy, ISSN 0143-831X, E-ISSN 1461-7099, Vol. 36, no 3, p. 457-477Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this article is to investigate how and why the truck manufacturer Scania adapted to the economic downturn between 2008 and 2010 in the manner it did. First, Scania signed a crisis agreement on fewer working hours and lower wages, and, later, it signed an agreement stipulating fewer working hours, but without wage reductions. Both of these agreements were combined with investments in competence development and education as well as with the decision not to give notice to the employees, which was uncommon among Swedish companies. It is claimed that the company wanted to strengthen the competitiveness by integrating the unions and the employees even more in the business. An important prerequisite was the company’s Flexibility Agreement, which allowed the company not to give temporary employees new contracts and to let temporary employees leave the company as soon as their maximum employment period of six months expired.

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  • 3.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    et al.
    Malmö högskola.
    Arvidson, Markus
    Axelsson, Jonas
    Protest, tystnad och partiskhet: Replik på en teori om lojalitet och whistleblowing2017In: Norsk sosiologisk tidsskrift, ISSN 2535-2512, Vol. 24, no 3, p. 257-265Article in journal (Refereed)
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  • 4.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    et al.
    Institutionen för Individ och samhälle (IS), Malmö University.
    Gautié, Jérôme
    Wright, Sally
    Green, Anne
    Innovation and job quality in the aeronautic industry: Results from qualitative case studies2017Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The paper focuses on the interactions between innovations (of all kinds) and job quality (in a wide sense, covering work and employment conditions, including job status, compensation, training and career opportunities) in the aeronautic industry. It draws on empirical evidence – industry survey and company case studies – from France, Sweden and the UK. Aeronautics has introduced important innovations in the past decade. For example, computer assisted devices (from computer aided engineering and design, Model Based Definition (MBD), i.e. the use of 3D drawings, to computer numeric control machines) have impacted the work of both engineers, technicians and operators. The new generation of process innovations (i.e. digitalization) include, among others, the introduction of cobots and robots, and virtual augmented reality devices. Aeronautics is indeed a front runner of the “factory of the future” or “industry 4.0”, which may have important consequences in terms of both job quantity and quality – notably in terms of education requirements, competence development, and individual task discretion/autonomy. Organisational innovations have also played an important role, such as the implementation of lean manufacturing and its derivatives, introduced more recently than in the automotive industry, with some specificities. Increasing pressure on all the segments of the supply chain has been witnessed in many firms and their subcontractors, in connection with some of the technical devices mentioned previously, and in a context of increasing competition, and in some cases to important changes in the governance of firms. But the reverse causality – i.e. from JQ to innovation – is also a key issue. Some firms are innovating by introducing new forms of organisations to improve some dimensions of job quality as a mean to foster the innovation capacity of the firm “from the bottom up”, with experiments such as “liberated company”. As in other industries, some big companies are trying to emulate the “start-up spirit”.

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  • 5.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    et al.
    Malmö Högskola.
    Rydell, Alexis
    Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Occupational science.
    Corporate Social Responsibility in Connection with Business Closures and Downsizing: A Literature Review2017In: Contemporary Management Research, ISSN 1813-5498, Vol. 13, no 1, p. 53-78Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this paper was to review the research on corporate social responsibility (CSR) in connection with business closures and downsizing to identify gaps in our knowledge. The study consisted of a systematic review of 24 refereed articles. The review identified four themes in the literature on CSR in connection with business closure and downsizing, namely CSR, transition programs and the local community; CSR and business strategy; CSR, power and reputation; and lastly, other articles on CSR in connection with business closures and downsizing. The review revealed a lack of understanding of the reasons, outcomes and methodology of CSR development in connection with business closures and downsizing.

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  • 6. Börnfelt, Per-Ola
    et al.
    Arvidsson, Markus
    Axelsson, Jonas
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Institutionen för Individ och samhälle (IS), Malmö Högskola.
    Whistleblowing in the light of loyalty and transparency2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of the paper is to raise questions about loyalty, whistleblowing and transparency in public organisations. In the first part we present the picture of a new form of loyalty in working life. A so called rational loyalty is replacing the traditional autocratic loyalty due to development in society and the legal framework, as presented by Wim Vandekerckhove (2006: 124-134). This development is supporting acts of whistleblowing. However, in the paper we argue that the picture is much more complex and whistleblowing is often hindered in practise in spite of developments in organisational policies and law. Therefore, we would also like to discuss if increased organisational transparency can promote more ethical behaviour and whistleblowing in public organisations. In the second part of the paper we discuss the prerequisites for rational loyalty in the Swedish public sector. We present different kinds of loyalty forms, which can be seen as counterforces to rational loyalty, whistleblowing and transparency at workplaces in the public sector.

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  • 7.
    Gautie, Jerome
    et al.
    Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Malmö University.
    Innovation and Job Quality in the Aerospace Industry in France and Sweden2019Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 8. Gautié, Jérome
    et al.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Malmö universitet, Institutionen för samhälle, kultur och identitet (SKI).
    Green, Ann
    Wright, Sally
    Innovation, Job Quality and Employment Outcomes in the Aerospace industry: Evidence from France, Sweden and the UK2018In: Virtuous circles between innovations, job quality and employment in Europe? Case study evidence from the manufacturing sector, private and public service sector / [ed] Karen Jaehrling, QuInnE , 2018, p. 35-88Chapter in book (Other academic)
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  • 9. Gautié, Jérôme
    et al.
    Ahlstrand, Roland
    Malmö universitet, Institutionen för samhälle, kultur och identitet (SKI).
    Lean versus Learning? Work Organizations, Innovation and Job Quality in the Aerospace Industry in France and Sweden2018Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    To cope with fierce competition in an increasing globalized context, many companies tend to reduce wage costs and intensify work, adopting what could be labelled as social dumping strategies, with negative effects on job quality (JQ) - this term encompassing compensation, employment status, work conditions, but also training and promotion opportunities. Innovation - defined here as any significative and valuable change in product, process, marketing or organisation -is often presented as the solution to break this potential vicious circle. Still, this positive view must be assessed. To do so, we need to open the "black box" of firms, to analyse more precisely the nature, the motivation, the modes of implementation, and the outcomes of innovation, by scrutinizing all the mechanisms at play. The paper focuses here on the interplay between innovation and JQ, in a specific industry, Aerospace, which is an innovation leader, with numerous spill-over effects on other manufacturing industry. Our study relies on qualitative empirical evidence from in-depth firm case studies, carried out in two countries that are good illustrations of different varieties of capitalism, France and Sweden. The firms under study have introduced a wide range of technological process innovations, such as 3D Computer-Aided-Design and different forms of Computer Aided Manufacturing and automated processes - from Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines to robots. If there were some common features concerning the impacts in terms of JQ, there were also differences related to organizational and managerial choices across firms - whether because organization mediated the impact of technological changes, or because these changes were highly interlinked with organisational ones. There were indeed important organizational changes in the firms of our sample, recent or still going on at the time of our study. These changes were sometimes considered even more important than technological innovations. One important change was the introduction of "lean" principles. But the way "lean" was implemented was in fact quite different across the different cases, with different consequences in terms of JQ. A quite rigid top-down "lean", dominant in France, contrasted with a more flexible form, more compatible with the "learning" type of organization witnessed in Sweden. One interesting difference between the two types of organization was the role of trade-unions in the "innovation-JQ" nexus. Still, in France, a growing concern about the limits of existing organisation was arising, as (better) work organisation was more and more identified as a key determinant of an innovative workplace - defined as a work environment that provides a fertile ground for innovations of any kind. Some organizational innovations (sometimes quite radical) were put in place to improve JQ, in particular in terms of worker's autonomy and involvement, to move from a "lean" to a more "learning" type of organization. Overall, our contribution highlights some key mechanisms of the interplay between work organization, JQ and innovation, and sheds light on some hotly debated issues concerning the impact of new technologies on the quality of jobs.

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