Global
  • Global
  • Global

Global "Body Shopping": An Indian Labor System in the Information Technology Industry

5.0 1
by Biao Xiang, Xiang Biao
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691118523

ISBN-13: 9780691118529

Pub. Date: 11/06/2006

Publisher: Princeton University Press

How can America's information technology (IT) industry predict serious labor shortages while at the same time laying off tens of thousands of employees annually? The answer is the industry's flexible labor management system--a flexibility widely regarded as the modus operandi of global capitalism today. Global "Body Shopping" explores how flexibility and

…  See more details below

Overview

How can America's information technology (IT) industry predict serious labor shortages while at the same time laying off tens of thousands of employees annually? The answer is the industry's flexible labor management system--a flexibility widely regarded as the modus operandi of global capitalism today. Global "Body Shopping" explores how flexibility and uncertainty in the IT labor market are constructed and sustained through concrete human actions.

Drawing on in-depth field research in southern India and in Australia, and folding an ethnography into a political economy examination, Xiang Biao offers a richly detailed analysis of the India-based global labor management practice known as "body shopping." In this practice, a group of consultants--body shops--in different countries works together to recruit IT workers. Body shops then farm out workers to clients as project-based labor; and upon a project's completion they either place the workers with a different client or "bench" them to await the next placement. Thus, labor is managed globally to serve volatile capital movement.

Underpinning this practice are unequal socioeconomic relations on multiple levels. While wealth in the New Economy is created in an increasingly abstract manner, everyday realities--stock markets in New York, benched IT workers in Sydney, dowries in Hyderabad, and women and children in Indian villages--sustain this flexibility.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691118529
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
11/06/2006
Series:
In-Formation Series
Pages:
208
Sales rank:
592,939
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations, Tables, Boxes vii

Acronyms ix

Prologue: A Stranger's Adventure xiii

Acknowledgments xxi

Introduction 1

Body Shopping: Brief Overview 4

Ethnicization, Individualization, and Transnationalization 7

Structure of the Book 11

Chapter 1 The Global Niche for Body Shopping 13

"Financial Democracy" and the Virtual Shortage of IT Labor 14

War for IT Talent and Wall of Regulation 19

Chapter 2: Producing "IT People" in Andhra 24

"D-Shops" and "T-Shops" 26

"Have Lands in Andhra, Have a House in Hyderabad, and Have a Job in America" 30

Producing IT People as a Family Business 34

Chapter 3: Selling "Bodies" and Selling Jobs 39

Fee-Paying Workers and Body Shops in Hyderabad 43

India as the Nexus of Global Body Shopping 48

Chapter 4: Business of "Branded Labor" in Sydney 53

"Marketing and Development Are Totally Different Stories" 57

"Only Indians Can Handle Indians" 59

Overlapping Businesses 62

Same Roof, Different Hats 65

Chapter 5: Agent Chains and Benching 70

Differentiated Circles 75

"Indians Are the Most Dangerous Ones!" 77

Overbooking Seats on the Bench 80

Chapter 6: Compliant Bodies? 82

Interlocks between Body Shops and Community Associations 86

Workers as Intermediaries 90

Relations among Workers: Support Yes, Solidarity No 92

The Way Out 97

Chapter 7: The World System of Body Shopping 100

The United States of America: "Mecca for IT People" 102

Global Gateways: Singapore, Malaysia, and the Middle East 104

U.S. Satellites: The Caribbean and Latin America 107

New Frontiers: "Sind Sie Inder?" and "Is There a German Dream?" 108

Ending Remarks The "Indian Triangle" in the Global IT Industry 110

Appendix: Essay The Remembered Fieldwork Sites: Impressions and Images 117

Biographical Index of Informants 129

Notes 149

References 167

Index 173

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Global "Body Shopping": An Indian Labor System in the Information Technology Industry 0 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 0 reviews.