Critically assess to what extent industrial relations in China have transformed to market-driven relations
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The introduction of the book ‘From Iron Rice to Informalisation’ (Kuruvilla, Lee, Gallagher) and Chapter 16 (India and China) in Beardwell and Thompson are good starting points. Your essay should draw on the essential and further readings of the China and USA lectures, and the relevant case study tutorial readings. You could then also draw on further chapters of the book by Kuruvilla, Lee, and Gallagher.
The essay is placed in the broader debate on convergence and divergence that needs to be briefly discussed. An awareness of the cultural/institutional explanation and the relevant debates would help.
The essay ought to discuss industrial relations and the nature of job regulation along dimensions such as: the relationship between employees, managers, and the state; trade union organising and influence; and employment rights and practices like employment protection, flexibility and precarious employment, dispute resolution or pay and rewards. These have changed considerably from the ‘iron rice bowl’ to the post financial crisis era. You should pay particular attention to the role of the state: Traditionally, a key stakeholder in Chinese industrial relations. Do industrial relations resemble the Anglo-Saxon US-style market-driven model focused on deregulation, liberalisation and hostility toward trade union organisation with a ‘hands-off’ state? Are they increasingly becoming similar, i.e. converging, or do they continue to be different, i.e. diverge, in spite of strong converging pressures through global integration and MNCs? There are similarities between the countries such as the spread of informality. There are also continued differences leading some authors to argue that there are continued socialist characteristics. They key argument should argue for either convergence, divergence or could explore alternative approaches.
Include: intro, main body (inc citations), conclusions, bibliography
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