University of London

University of London
School of Oriental and African Studies
Faculty of Law & Social Sciences
Department of Development Studies
The Working Poor and Development
Course code: 15PDSH030
2011-12 (Term 2)
Course convenor: Jens Lerche
Course level: postgraduate
Course Teachers:
Jens Lerche, room 295
Office hours: Thursday 2-4pm
Time and place:
Lecture: Friday 11-1, room B 102
Tutorials: Friday 1-2 MB273 and 3-4 30RS 405
Lecture Topics:
Term 2
Introduction and overview: labour, development
and poverty
Labour and development to the 1980s: the social
democratic ‘model’
Labour in the South: neo-liberal globalisation,
informalisation (i)
Labour in the South: neo-liberal globalisation,
informalisation (ii)
5 Rural labour
Reading Week
6 Forced labour
7 Child labour
8 Decent Work and social policies
Organising the working poor: trade unions, social
movements and NGOs
Corporate Social Responsibility and development
13 Jan
20 Jan
27 Jan
3 Feb
10 Feb
24 Feb
2 Mar
9 Mar
16 Mar
23 Mar
Course Description:
This course is intended for students with an interest in the working poor and
development in the South. It investigates how a focus on the working poor differs
conceptually from a perspective focussing on poverty, and leads to different
developmental solutions. The course starts out by exploring main approaches to the
working poor and poverty. It then moves on to an analysis of groups of working poor,
globalisation and related processes such as informalisation. In addition to a ‘classic’
focus on industrial sector labour the course also investigates rural labour, forced
labour and child labour. The final section of the course deals with policy approaches
to the working poor such as the ILO ‘decent work’ approach, and policies of labour
unions, social movements and ‘ethical’ initiatives such as corporate social
responsibility. Each topic is explored both theoretically and in specific historical and
geographical contexts.
Course Organisation:
In this course you attend a weekly lecture (a two hour session) and participate in a
weekly seminar. Lecture periods allow for some questions and discussion following
the lecture. Outline notes for each lecture are posted on Blackboard (see below) after
the lecture has been given.
In the seminar you are required, once in each term, to make a short presentation and
lead a discussion based on the readings of the week. It is important that readings
selected for class discussion are read by everyone in preparation for the weekly
seminar. To best achieve the learning outcomes for the week, it is advisable that all
members of the seminar group prepare a few questions or points to contribute to the
seminar discussions.
Note that
You should always attend the same seminar group; changing groups has to be
agreed by the Course Convener.
Regular participation in seminar groups is a course requirement; if you are
unable to attend a seminar group meeting you have to notify your tutor.
Course Aims:
The aim of this module is to enable students to understand the interaction between
‘the working poor’ and ‘development’ and, as part of this, to understand how a
development approach which focuses on labouring groups differs conceptually from
a perspective focussing on poverty, and leads to different developmental solutions.
To do so, the course will consider conceptual issues relating to labour and
development, and historical aspects of labour and capitalist development in Europe
and the South. It will analyse globalisation, neo-liberalism and labour, and related
competing theories including differences between poverty focussed and labour
focussed approaches. It will discuss policy approaches to the working poor including
ILO’s ‘decent work’ approach, Corporate Social Responsibility and international
union approaches, as well as struggles of and for the working poor by organised
labour and social movements. Both mainstream and heterodox approaches will be
Learning Outcomes:
Upon successful completion of the course students will be able to understand the
major and minor strands in debates on the labouring poor and development. Students
will be able to analyse and compare mainstream and heterodox approaches. They will
be able to apply both theory and methodology in constructing a critical analysis of the
issues for a particular country.
As noted, there is page on the Blackboard site for this course where lecture notes and
announcements are posted.
To access the Blackboard go to and log in using your SOAS ID.
In the 'courses' box on the welcome page you will find a link to ‘The Working Poor
and Development’, and will be able to navigate from there.
Methods of Assessment:
3000 Word Essay
Due Date
Thursday, final week of
term 2
Essays must be typed. Late submission penalties apply: please submit two copies of
your essay to the Faculty Office before 4pm on the deadline. You must keep a copy
of your essay.
The essay topics are listed at the end of each lecture outline. Note that if you choose
an essay topic from one of the lectures later in the term, you will need to work on
your essay before the lecture is given, using the reading list provided for that topic.
Advice on intellectual good practice in writing essays, and rules for submitting
essays, are provided in a document you will find on Blackboard: ‘How to write good
assignments – and how to submit them’.
Course Outline and Reading List:
The reading list gives each week’s core readings as well as additional readings.
Core readings are available electronically via the e-reading list (journal articles) and
in study packs (chapters of books) from Probsthain’s SOAS bookshop (in the Brunei
Gallery) at cost price. Additional readings can be found in the SOAS library,
including from the many journals to which the library has an electronic subscription.
Sometimes you may need to find an item of additional reading in one of our sister
libraries of the University of London. Recent books can, of course, also be purchased
from nearby bookstores (e.g. Waterstones).
Selected websites:
ILO digital library. A major source covering studies of relevance to the ILO and ILO
policy documents, relevant for most weeks of the course. Entry points listing selected
readings are:
ILO’s ‘declaration on fundamental principles and rights at work’ office (child labour,
forced labour etc)
World Bank ‘social protection and labor’ webpage
..and its ‘employment and shared growth’ webpage
Unions and movements:
Global unions
International Labour Rights Forum
South Asia Labour Activist Library
Labour file: Indian labour rights magazine
Asia Monitor resource Centre: Asian labour rights NGO
Women in Informal Employment Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO)
‘decent work / decent life’: a union and social movement organised campaign
Other sources:
Cornell University’s ‘Globalization and the workplace’ and ‘Global Labor Institute’:
Wikipedia entry on the global labour university
The Global Labour Journal
1. Introduction and Overview:
Labour, Development and Poverty
Lecture one introduces students to the main debates that run through the course, as
well as course organisation. It then discusses a number of mainstream approaches to
poverty and development, in relation to labour and development approaches, and in
relation to wider development theories and debates. This leads to the introduction and
assessment of the concept ‘the working poor’, a central concept of this course.
Core readings
Bernstein, H. 2007, ‘Capital and labour from centre to margins’. Keynote address for
conference on Living on the Margins. Vulnerability, Exclusion and the State in the
Informal Economy, Cape Town, 26-28 March 2007
[Available from the Poverty Frontiers website]
Majid, N. 2001, ‘The Working Poor in Developing Countries’, International Labour
Review, 140(3): 271-91
[Available from EBSCO]
Krugman, P. and Wells, R. 2008, ‘Factor Markets and the Distribution of Income’,
Microeconomics, part 6 chapter 12.
Lier, D.C., 2007, ‘Places of Work, Scales of Organising: a Review of Labour
Geography’, Geography Compass 1(4) 814-33
Additional readings
Harriss-White, B. 2006, ‘Poverty and Capitalism’ Economic and Political Weekly,
41(13) 1241-6.
[Available from the SOAS library electronically]
World Bank, 2000, ‘Causes of Poverty and a Framework for Action’ (Chapter 2)
World Development Report, 2000: Attacking Poverty. Oxford University Press, pp
[Available from the SOAS library]
Stewart, F., Laderchi, C.R. and Saith, R., 2007, ‘Introduction: Four Approaches to
Defining and Measuring Poverty’, in Stewart, F., R Saith and B Harriss-White
(eds), Defining Poverty in the Developing World, Basingstoke: Palgrave
Macmillan, pp. 1-35.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
World Bank 2000, ‘The Nature and Evolution of Poverty’ (Chapter 1) World
Development Report, 2000: Attacking Poverty. Oxford University Press, pp.15-29
[Available from the SOAS library]
Nissanke, M. and Thorbecke, E., 2006, ‘The Impact of Globalization on the World’s
Poor’, World Development 34(8): 1338-1360.
[Available from ScienceDirect]
Scoones, I., 2009, ‘Livelihoods perspectives and rural development’, Journal of
Peasant Studies 36(1):171-97.
[Available from IngentaConnect]
Harriss, J., 2007, ‘Bringing Politics Back into Poverty Analysis: Why Understanding
Social Relations Matters more for Policy on Chronic Poverty than Measurement’.
CPRC Working Paper 77. Manchester: CPRC.
[Available from the Chronic Poverty website]
…conceptualizing labour
Van der Linden, M., 2005, ‘Conceptualising the world working class’, in S.
Bhattacharya and J. Lucassen (eds), Workers in the Informal Sector: Studies in
Labour History, 1800–2000, New Delhi: Macmillan India,
[Available from the SOAS library]
Van der Linden, M., 2008, ‘Who are the workers?’ in van der Linden, M: Workers of
the world. Essays toward a global labor history. Leiden: Brill, pp 17-38
[Available from the This is Forever website]
Marx, K., 1887, ‘the labour-process and the process of producing surplus-value’,
‘illustrations of the general law of capitalist accumulation’; ‘primitive
accumulation’, Capital vol I, chapters 7, 10, 25 and part 8,
[Available from Marxists website]
Standing, G., 2009, ‘Work and labour in Great Transformations’, in G Standing,
Work after Globalization, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp. 1-31.
Elson, D. 1979, ‘The Value Theory of Labour’, in D. Elson (ed.) Value: The
Representation of Labour in Capitalism, London: CSE Books.
Fields, G, 2004, A Guide to Multisector Labor Market Models, Paper Prepared for the
World Bank Labor Market Conference, Washington, DC November 18-19, 2004
Wright, E. O. 1985, Classes. London: Verso.
Thompson, E.P. 1968, The Making of the English Working Class, London: Penguin.
Polanyi, K. 1944, ‘The Self-Regulating Market and the Fictitious Commodities:
Labor, Land, and Money’, The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic
Origins of Our Time, Chapter 6. Boston: Beacon Press.
Nichols, T. 1980, ‘The Capitalist Labour Process: Introduction’, in T. Nichols (ed.)
Capital and Labour: Studies in the Capitalist Labour Process, London: Fontana,
pp. 21-41.
Smith, A. 1776, ‘Of the Component Parts of the Price of Commodities’, An Inquiry
into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Book 1, Chapter 6
Fields, G, 2004, A Guide to Multisector Labor Market Models, Paper Prepared for the
World Bank Labor Market Conference, Washington, DC November 18-19, 2004
…numbers, categories and analyses of the working poor
ILO 2009, Global Employment Trends. Geneva: ILO, January – March – May e.g.
[Available from the ILO]
ILO (2002) ‘Women and Men in the Informal Economy, a Statistical Picture’,
Employment Sector, ILO. Geneva: ILO esp pp 17-25 and 33-56
[Available from WIEGO]
Sengupta, A., Kannan, K.P., Raveendran, G., 2008: ‘India’s Common People: Who
are they, how many are they and how do they live?’, Economic and Political
Weekly 43(11): 49-63.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Davis, M. (2006) Planet of Slums, London: Verso.
[Available from the SOAS library]
2. Labour and Development to the 1980s: the social democratic ‘model’
This week is concerned with labour and development from a historical perspective.
The focus is on the ‘golden age of capitalism’ (1950s-1970s) and the social
democratic welfare state. This is discussed in relation to the development model now
promoted by the International Labour Office (ILO) and in historical contexts with
reference to both Europe and the South, with a focus on (i) what lessons can be
learned from the North, and (ii) how compatible the mainly European welfare state
experiences of the last century are with the processes of social change in the South
today? Especially (iii), can welfare states develop without the presence of strong
industrial working classes and a strong state sector?
Core readings
In study pack
Polanyi, K. 1944, ‘The Self-Regulating Market and the Fictitious Commodities:
Labor, Land, and Money’, The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic
Origins of Our Time, Chapter 6. Boston: Beacon Press
Silver, B., 2003, ‘Labour Movements and World Politics’, in Forces of Labour.
Workers’ Movements and Globalization since 1870. Cambridge: CUP, Chapter 4
pp 124-67.
[Availabe from the SOAS library]
Van Schendel, W., 2007, ‘Stretching labour historiography: pointers from South
Asia’, in Behal, R. and van der Linden, M. (eds). India’s Labouring Poor.
Historical Studies, c. 1600–c. 2000. New Delhi: Foundation Books, pp. 229-262.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Alavi, H. 1983, ‘State and class under peripheral capitalism’, H. Alavi and T. Shanin
(eds.) Introduction to sociology of the ‘developing’ societies, New York: Monthly
Review Press.
Additional readings
…the welfare state, the golden age and present ILO and World Bank related
Gough, I., 2008, ‘European Welfare States: Explanations and Lessons for Developing
Countries’, in Dani, A. and de Haan, A. (eds), Inclusive states. Social policy and
structural inequalities. Washington DC: World Bank., pp 39-72.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Gough, I., 2003, ‘Welfare regimes in development contexts: a global and regional
analysis’, in I Gough, G Wood, with A. Barrientos, P Bevan, G Room, P Davis.
Insecurity and Welfare Regimes in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, pp 15-48.
Standing, G., 2009, ‘Fictitious decommodification: the failure of industrial
citizenship, in G Standing, Work after Globalization, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar,
pp. 32-52.
Standing, G., 1999, Global Labour Flexibility. Seeking Distributive Justice.
Basingstoke: Macmillan., esp ch 3’the pursuit of flexibility’, pp 49-82.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Iversen T., Eichengreen B., 1999, ‘Institutions and economic performance: evidence
from the labour market’, Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 15(4), pp. 121-138.
[Available from IngentaConnect]
Esping-Andersen, G., 1990, The three worlds of welfare capitalism. Princeton:
Princeton university press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
De Swaan A., 1998, In Care of the State: Health Care, Education and Welfare in
Europe and the USA in the Modern Era, Cambridge: Cambridge University
[Available from the Senate House library]
IILS 2008, World of Work Report 2008. Income Inequalities in the Age of Financial
Globalization. Geneva: ILO.
[Available from the ILO website]
Paci, P. and Serneels, P., 2007, ‘Employment and Shared Growth: Rethinking the
Role of Labor Mobility for Development’, Washington DC: World Bank
Publications, esp. pp1-21
[Available from Google Books (read-only webpage)
Gutierrez, C., Paci, P., Orecchia, C., Serneels, P., 2009, ‘Does employment
generation really matter for poverty reduction?’, in Kanbur, R. and Svejnar, J.
(eds), Labour Markets and Economic Development, London: Routledge, pp.1539.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lipietz, A., 1986, ‘New tendencies in the international division of labor: regimes of
accumulation and modes of regulation’, in Scott, A., Storper M., (eds),
Production, Work, Territory. The Geographical Anatomy of Industrial
Capitalism, London: Allen and Unwin, pp.16-40
[Available from the SOAS library]
Kiely, R., 2007, ‘Capitalist Expansion and Imperialism’ and ‘Post-1945 Capitalism
and Development’, in The New Political Economy of Development. Basingstoke:
Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 27-58.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Munck, R. 2002, Globalisation and Labour: the new ‘Great Transformation’,
London: Zed Books. Chapter 2:’the golden era’, pp. 24-50.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Hepple, B., 2006, ‘Rights at work’, in Ghai, D., (ed), Decent Work: Objectives And
Strategies. Geneva: International Institute for Labour Studies, ILO, pp. 33-75.
[Available from the ILO]
…the historical context
Wolf, E., 1997, Europe and the People Without History. Berkeley: University of
[Available from the SOAS library]
Hobsbawm, E.J., 1976 [1964], Labouring Men. Studies in the history of labour.
London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Feund, B., 1988, The African Worker. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Schler, L. L. Bethlehemb; G. Sabar,, 2009, 'Rethinking labour in Africa, past and
present', African Identities, 7(3): 287-98
Amarjit, K., 2004, Wage labour in Southeast Asia since 1840: globalisation,
international division of labour and labour transformations. Basingstoke:
[available from the SOAS library]
Behal, R. and van der Linden, M. (eds), 2007, India’s Labouring Poor. Historical
Studies, c. 1600–c. 2000. New Delhi: Foundation Books
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Breman J.,1996. Footloose Labour: Working in India's Internal Economy,
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
[Available from the SOAS library]
Sewlden, M., 1983, ‘The proletariat, revolutionary change, and the state in China and
Japan, 1850-1950’, in Wallerstein, I. (ed.), Labor in the world social structure,
London: Sage.
[available from the SOAS library]
Collier, R., and Collier D., 1991, ‘Context: the labour movement and the state in
Latin America’, in Collier, R. and Collier, D., Shaping the Political Arena:
Critical Junctures, the Labor Movement, and Regime Dynamics in Latin America.
Princeton: Princeton University Press, pp. 40-58.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Cooper, F, 1997, ‘Modernising Bureaucrats, Backward Africans and the
Development Concept’, in Cooper and Packard eds., International Development
and the Social Sciences, Berkeley: University of California Press pp. 64-92.
[Available from the SOAS library
Chang, D., 2009, Capitalist development in Korea. London: Routledge, esp. pp 7391.
[Available from the SOAS library]
3. Labour in the South: neo-liberal globalisation, informalisation (i)
Labour market policies changed across the world from the 1980s onwards, in relation
to globalisation and the implementation of neo-liberal labour market policies. The
economy was to be freed from regulations hampering growth and development. The
role and importance of ‘labour’ and the ‘working poor’ shifted as part of this. This
week introduces a number of debates regarding globalisation and labour. Is the
globalisation of export oriented production essentially a ‘race to the bottom’? Or is it
best understood as a vehicle for job creation and development? How have neo-liberal
policies and the changes in production processes influenced industrial employment,
including through processes of ‘informalisation’? And to what extent has this led to
new categories of ‘working poor’?
Core readings
In study pack
Standing, G., 2009, ‘Inequality, class and the ‘precariat’, in G Standing, Work after
Globalization, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp. 98-117.
Chang, D., 2009, ‘Informalising Labour in Asia's Global Factory.' Journal of
Contemporary Asia, 39 (2): 161-179.
[Available from EBSCO]
Pun, N. and Smith, C., 2007, ‘Putting the Transnational Labour Process in its Place:
The Dormitory Labour Regime in Post-Socialist China’ Work, Employment and
Society (21)1: 27-45.
[Available from Sage Premier]
Cawthorne, P., and Kitching, G., 2001, ‘Moral Dilemmas and Factual Claims: Some
Comments on Paul Krugman’s Defense of Cheap Labor’, Review of Social
Economy 59(4), 456-66.
[Available from the Senate House library]
Additional readings
… general analyses
Bowles, P., 2010: ‘Globalization’s Problematic for Labour: Three Paradigms’,
Global Labour Journal 1(1) 12-31
Standing, G., 1999, ‘The Renewed Growth of Labour Flexibility’, in Global Labour
Flexibility, London: MacMillan., ch 4, pp 83-127
[Available from the SOAS library]
Standing, G., 2009, ‘labour recommodification in the global transformation;, in G
Standing, Work after Globalization, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp. 59-97.
Standing, G., 2011, The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class. London: Bloomsbury
Breman J., 1995, ‘Labour, Get Lost: A Late Capitalist Manifesto’, in Economic and
Political Weekly, 30(37): 2294-2300.
[Available from the SOAS library electronically]
Chan, A. (2003), ‘A Race to the Bottom: Globalisation and China’s Labour
Standard’, China Perspective, 46: 41-49.
[Available from the China Perspectives webpage]
Silver, B. and Arrighi G., 2000, ‘Workers North and South’, in L. Panitch, and C.
Leys (eds.), Socialist Register 2001 (London: Merlin Press), pp. 51-74.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Kiely, R., 2007, ‘Globalization, Poverty and the Contemporary World Economy’ and
‘The end of the Post-war Boom and Capitalist Restructuring’, in The New
Political Economy of Development. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 131-57
and 42-58.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Standing, G., 1999, ‘The Renewed Growth of Labour Flexibility’, in Global Labour
Flexibility, London: MacMillan., ch 3.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Munck, R. 2002, Globalisation and Labour: the new ‘Great Transformation’,
London: Zed Books. Chapter 2 and 5, ‘the era of globalisation’ and ‘workers
south’ pp. 51-76 and 106-134.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Harvey, D. 2000, ‘From Fordism to Flexible Accumulation’, in Nash, K. (ed),
Readings in Contemporary Political Sociology, Oxford: Blackwell.
[Available from the Birkbeck library]
Harvey D., 2005, A brief history of neo-liberalism, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Castree, N., Coe, N., Ward, K., and Samers, M., 2004, Spaces of work. Global
capitalism and geographies of labour. London: Sage
[Available from the SOAS library]
World Bank, 1994, World Development Report 1995, Washington DC: World Bank
[Available from the World Bank website]
Breman, J., 2009, ‘Myth of the Global Safety Net’, New Left Review 59: 29-36.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Standing G., 2007, ‘Offshoring and Labor Recommodification in the Global
Transformation’, in Paus, E. (ed) Global Capitalism Unbound: Winners and
Losers from Offshore Outsourcing, New York: Palgrave MacMillan, pp. 41-62.
[Available from the SOAS library]
M.Carr and Chen, M., 2002, Globalization and the Informal Economy: How Global
Trade and Investment Impact on the Working Poor, Geneva: ILO.
[Available from WIEGO]
…specific issues: informality, wage levels, ILO and World Bank related views
Harrison, A., and Scorse, J., 2009, ‘Do foreign-owned firms pay more? Evidence
from the Indonesian manufacturing sector’, in Kanbur, R. and Svejnar, J. (eds),
Labour Markets and Economic Development, London: Routledge, pp.319-340.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Rakowski C. A.,1994, ‘Convergence and Divergence in the Informal Sector Debate:
a Focus on Latin America, 1984-92’, in World Development, 22(4): 501-516
[Available from ScienceDirect]
Castells, M. and Portes, A., 1989, ‘World Underneath: The Origins, Dynamics, and
Effects of the Informal Economy’, in Portes, A, Castells, M. and Benton, L. (eds),
The Informal Economy: Studies in Advanced and Less Developed Countries.
Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
World Commission on the Social Dimension of Globalization, 2004, A fair
globalization. Creating opportunities for all. Geneva: ILO.
[Available from the ILO]
Elliott, K. A. and Freeman, R. B. (2003), Can Labor Standard Improve Under
Globalization?, Washington: Institute for International Economics.
[Available from Google Books]
Singh, A. and A Zammit, 2004, ‘Labour standards and the ‘race to the bottom’:
rethinking globalization and workers’ rights from developmental and solidaristic
perspectives’, Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 20(1), pp 85-104.
[Available from IngentaConnect]
Won, Jaeyoun 2004, ‘Withering Away of the Iron Rice Bown? The Reemployment
Project of Post-Socialist China’, Studies in Comparative International
Development, Vol. 39, No. 2, pp. 71-93.
[Available from EBSCO]
Zhu, Yuchao 2004, ‘Workers, Unions and the State: Migrant Workers in China’s
Labour-intensive Foreign Enterprises’ Development and Change, Vol. 35, No. 5,
pp. 1011-1036.
[Available from EBSCO]
4. Labour in the South: neo-liberal globalisation, informalisation (ii)
This week continues the exploration of the working poor under neo-liberal
globalisation through a more detailed investigation of the outcomes on the ground. It
does so first by focussing on the shifting demands for labour under globalisation, and
especially on the ‘feminisation of (industrial and service sector) labour’ thesis.
Secondly it looks aspects of the emerging division of labour within the South and,
thirdly, the changing position of labour in different parts of the world, with the
emphasis on the working poor in Asia, especially in India.
Core readings
In study pack
Lerche, J., 2010, ‘From ‘rural labour’ to ‘classes of labour’, in Harriss-White, B. and
Heyer, J., Comparative Political Economy, London: Routledge, pp 66-87.
Perrons, D., 2004, ‘The Global Division of Labour and the Feminization of
Employment, Chapter 4 in Globalization and Social Change, London: Routledge,
pp 89-126.
[Available from the SOAS library]
De Neve, G.. 2005. ‘Weaving for IKEA in South India: Subcontracting, Labour
Markets and Gender Relations in a Global Value Chain’, in Assayag, J., and
Fuller, C.J. (eds) Globalizing India: perspectives from below, London: Anthem.
Also online but very very slow download, hence in pack
[Available from JNU]
Caraway T.L. 2005, ‘The Political Economy of Feminization: From “Cheap Labor”
to Gendered Discourses of Work’, Politics and Gender 1 (3) 399-429.
Additional readings
…globalisation and gender
Mezzadri A., 2008, ‘The Rise of Neoliberal Globalisation and the New Old Social
Regulation of Labour: a Case of Delhi garment sector’, in The Indian Journal of
Labour Economics, 51(4): 603-618.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Standing G. 1999, ‘Global Feminization through Flexible Labor: a Theme Revisited’,
in World Development, 27(3): 583-602.
[Available from ScienceDirect]
Standing, G., 2009, ‘Crumbling barriers to decommodification’, in G Standing, Work
after Globalization, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp.118-46.
Benería, L., Floro, M., 2005. ‘Distribution, gender, and labor market informalization:
A conceptual framework with a focus on homeworkers’ in Kudva, N. and
Benería,L., (eds), Rethinking informalization. poverty, precarious jobs and social
[Available from the Cornell Open Repository]
Beneria, L., 2003, Gender, development and globalization. Economics as if all people
mattered. London: Routledge.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Pearson, R., 1998, ‘‘Nimble fingers’ revisited. Reflections on women and Third
World industrialisation in the late twentieth century’.in Jackson, C. and Pearson,
R., Feminist visions of development: gender, analysis and policy, London,
Routledge, pp. 171-88.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Thoebald, S. 2002, ‘Working for global factories: Thai women in electronics export
companies in the Northern Regional Industrial Estate’, in Gills, D. and Piper, N.
(eds.) Women and Work in Globalising Asia. London: Routledge, pp131-153.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Constable, N. 2002, ‘Filipina Workers in Hong Kong Homes: Household Rules and
Relations’, in Ehrenreich. B. and Hochschild, A. (eds.) Global Woman: nannies,
maids, and sex workers in the new economy, New York: Owl Books, pp. 115-141.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Salzinger, L., 2002, ‘Manufacturing sexual subjects: ‘harassment’, desire and
discipline on a Maquiladora shopfloor’ in Taylor, S., (ed.) Ethnographic Research,
London: Sage.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Kantor, P., 2003, ‘Women's Empowerment through Home-Based Work: Evidence
from India,’ Development and Change 34 (3): 425-45
[Available from EBSCO]
Zheng, T., 2007, ‘From Peasant women to bar hostesses: an ethnography of China’s
karaoke sex industry’, in Lee, C.K. (ed.) Working in China: Ethnographies of
labor and workplace transformation, New York: Routledge, pp. 124-44.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Yan, H. 2008, New Masters, New Servants: Migration, Development, and Women
Workers in China, London: Duke University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Floro, M., and M Meurs, 2009, ‘Global Trends in Women’s Access to “Decent
Work”’. Geneva: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung
…globalisation and labour: case studies
Paus E., 2007, Global Capitalism Unbound: Winners and Losers from Offshore
Outsourcing, New York: Palgrave MacMillan
[Available from the SOAS library]
Jilberto, A, and Riethof, M, 2002 (eds), 2002, Labour Relations in Development,
London: Routledge.
[Available from the UCL library]
Burgess, J. and Connell, J. (eds), 2007, Globalisation and Work in Asia. Oxford:
Chandos Publishing.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Mehrotra, S. and Biggeri, M., 2007, Asian Informal Workers. Global risks, local
protection. London: Routledge.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lee, S. and Wood, A., 2007, ‘Changing patterns in the world of work in Asia: an
overview’, in Lee, S. and Eyraud, F. (eds), 2008, Globalization, flexibilization and
working conditions in Asia and the Pacific. Geneva: ILO, pp 17-48.
[Available from the SOAS library]
NCEUS (National Commission for Enterprises in the Unorganised Sector), 2007,
Report on Conditions of Work and Promotion of Livelihoods in the Unorganised
Sector, New Delhi: NCEUS, Government of India.
[Available from the NCEUS website]
Pun, N. 2005, Made in China: Women Factory Workers in a Global Workplace,
Durham: Duke University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library
Chang, Dae-Oup and Chae, Jun-Ho, 2004, 'The Transformation of Korean Labour
Relations Since 1997', Journal of Contemporary Asia, 34 (4). pp. 427-448.
[Available from EBSCO]
Cook, S. 2008, ‘The Challenge of Informality. Perspectives on China's Changing
Labour Market’, IDS Bulletin, (39) 2: 48-56
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Rizzo, M., 2011. ‘Life is War’: Informal Transport Workers and Neoliberalism in
Tanzania 1998–2009’. Development and Change 42(5) 1179-1206
5. Rural Labour
This week shifts the attention towards rural labour and moves away from the
industrial and service sector which have been the focus in most of the weeks till now.
It is shown that just as ‘rural development’ cannot be understood as separate from
overall development, so ‘rural labour’ is best not seen in isolation from urban
industrial and service labour. Non-agricultural informal economy seasonal
employment has become more important and, within agriculture, agricultural
commodity chains have gained importance in some parts of the South. The lecture thus
investigates the different meanings of ‘rural labour’ today, and variations across the
South. It then moves on to a discussion of the impact of the changes in ‘rurality’ on
policy options for the rural working poor and, finally, it looks at movements of the
rural working poor.
Core readings
In study pack
Deshingkar, P., S Kumar, H K Choubey and D Kumar, 2009, ‘Circular migration in
Bihar. The money order economy’, in P Deshingkar and J Farrington (eds),
Circular migration and multilocational livelihood strategies in rural India. New
Delhi: Oxford University Press, pp. 139-76.
Akram-Lodhi, A.H., S M Borras Jr, C Kay and T McKinley, 2007, ‘Neoliberal
globalisation, land and poverty. Implications for public action’, in Akram-Lodhi,
A.H., S M Borras Jr, C Kay (eds), Land, poverty and livelihoods in an era of
globalization. London: Routledge, pp 383-98.
Bernstein, H., 2010. ‘Rural Livelihoods and Agrarian Change: Bringing Class Back
In’, N. Long, Y. Jingzhong, W. Yihuan (eds.). Rural transformations and
development : China in context : the everyday lives of policies and people.
London: Edward Elgar
Selwyn, B., 2007, ‘Labour Process and Workers’ Bargaining Power in Export Grape
Production, North East Brazil’. Journal of Agrarian Change 7(4): 526 – 53.
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Additional readings
Rigg J., 2006, ‘Land, Farming, Livelihoods, and Poverty: Rethinking the Links in the
Rural South’, in World Development, 34(1): 180-202
[Available from ScienceDirect]
Bernstein, H., 2007, ‘Agrarian Questions of Capital and Labour: Some Theory about
Land Reform (and a Periodisation)’, in Ntsebeza, L. and Hall, R, (eds.), The Land
Question in South Africa. The Challenge of Transformation and Redistribution,
Cape Town: HSRC Press.
[Available from the SOAS library and from HSRC Press]
Lipton, M., 2009. Land Reform in Developing Countries. Property Rights and
Property Wrongs. London: Routledge
Cramer, C., Oya, C and Sender, J., 2008, ‘Lifting the Blinkers: A New View of
Power, Diversity and Poverty in Mozambican Rural Labour Markets’. Journal of
Modern African Studies, 46(3): 361-92
[Available from Cambridge Journals]
Bardhan, P., 2006, ‘Globalization and Rural Poverty’, World Development 34(8),
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Byres, T., Kapadia K. and Lerche J. (eds), 1999, Rural Labour Relations in India,
Journal of Peasant Studies 26(2/3).
[Available from the SOAS library]
ILO, 2008, Promotion of rural employment for poverty reduction. International
Labour Conference, 97th Session, 2008, Report IV,
Anonymous, 2007: ‘Rural employment and migration: in search of decent work’,
ODI Briefing Paper, 27,
[Available from the ODI website]
Guang, Lei 2005, The Market As Social Convention: Rural Migrants and the Making
of China’s Home Renovation Market, Critical Asian Studies, Vol. 37, No. 3, pp.
391- 411
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Breman, J.,1996, ‘Changing Profile of Rural Labour’ in Footloose Labour: Working
in India’s Internal Economy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Breman, J, 2007, The poverty regime in village India. New Delhi: Oxford University
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Borras, S., Edelman, M., Kay, C., 2008, ‘Transnational agrarian movements, origins
and politics, campaigns and impact’, Journal of Agrarian Change 8(2/3): 169204
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Borras, S., 2008, La via Campesina and its global campaign for agrarian reform,
Journal of Agrarian Change 8(2/3): 259-89.
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Cramer, C, Oya, C and Sender, J, 2008, ‘Rural Labour Markets in Sub-Saharan
Africa: A New View of Poverty, Power and Policy’. Policy Brief No.1, CDPR,
[Available from the CDPR website]
Oya, C. and Sender, J., 2009, ‘Divorced, Separated and Widowed Female Workers in
Rural Mozambique’. Feminist Economics 15(2): 1-31
[Available from InformaWorld]
Bhalla, S., Anup K., and Shobha, T., 2004, Rural Casual Labourers, Wages and
Poverty: 1983 to 1999-2000, Paper for the Chronic Poverty Research Centre.
Bryceson D., Kay, C., Mooij, J. (eds), 2000, Disappearing Peasantries? Rural
Labour in Latin America, Asia and Africa. London: London: Intermediate
Technology Publications.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
ILO, Bureau for Workers’ Activities, 2003, Decent work in agriculture, Background
Paper, Symposium on Decent Work in Agriculture, organized by the ILO Bureau
for Workers’ Activities on 15-18 September 2003 in Geneva. Geneva: ILO
[Available from the ILO website]
World Bank, 1995, Labor and the Growth Crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa, Regional
Perspectives on the World Development Report 1995, Washington D.C.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Sender J., C. Cramer and C. Oya, 2005, ‘Unequal Prospects: Disparities in the Quantity
and Quality of Labour Supply in sub-Saharan Africa’ Social Protection Discussion
Paper n. 0525, World Bank.
[Available from the SOAS e-prints system]
Lachaud, J.,1994, The Labour Market in Africa, International Institute for Labour
Studies, Research Series 102.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Barrientos, S. and Kritzinger, A. 2004, ‘Squaring the circle: global production and the
informalization of work in South African fruit exports,’ Journal of International
Development, 16(1): 81-92.
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Selwyn, B., 2009. ‘Gender Wage Work and Development in North East Brazil’
Bulletin of Latin American Research, 2009.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Ponte, S. 2000, ‘From Social Negotiation to Contract: Shifting Strategies of Farm
Labour Recruitment in Tanzania Under Market Liberalization’ World
Development, 28 (6).
[Available from the Wiley InterScience]
Mohapatra, S., Scott R. and Goodhue, R. 2007, ‘The Rise of Self-Employment in
Rural China: Development or Distress?’, World Development 35(1) :163–81.
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Riisgaard, L., 2009. ‘Global Value Chains, Labor Organization and Private Social
Standards: Lessons from East African Cut Flower Industries’, World Development
37(2), 326–340.
Reading Week
6. Forced Labour
Forced or unfree labour is illegal according to international conventions, but is
nevertheless prevalent in the developing world. This week will look at what forced
labour is, how it can be understood in relation to ‘free’ labour, and how it relates to
capitalism: is it a pre-capitalist relic or is it increasing as part of the globalisation
processes? Policies against forced labour will also be addressed.
Core readings
In study pack
Guerin, I., 2009, ‘Corridors of migration and chains of dependence: brick kiln
moulders in Tamil Nadu’, with G. Venkatusubrahmanian, in J. Breman, I. Guerin
and A. Prakash (eds), India’s Unfree Workforce: Of Bondage Old and New, New
Delhi: Oxford University Press, pp. 170-198.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Sakomoto, L., 2009, ‘ “Slave labor” in Brazil’, in Andrees, B. and Belser, P., Forced
labour: Coercion and exploitation in the private economy. ILO and Lynne
Rienne, pp 15-33.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Lerche J., 2007, ‘A Global Alliance against Forced Labour? Unfree labour, Neo-liberal
Globalisation and the International Labour Organisation’, in Journal of Agrarian
Change, 7(4): 425-52.
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Bastiai, T., S. McGrath, 2010. ‘Temporality, migration and unfree labour: migrant
garment workers’, Manchester Papers in Political Economy, working paper 6. Pp
1- 38.
Additional readings
Breman, J. and Guerin, I., 2009, ‘On bondage: old and new’, in J. Breman, I. Guerin
and A. Prakash (eds), India’s Unfree Workforce: Of Bondage Old and New, New
Delhi: Oxford University Press, pp 1-17.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Andrees, B. and Belser, P., 2009, ‘Strengthening labour market governance against
forced labor’, in Andrees, B. and Belser, P., Forced labour: Coercion and
exploitation in the private economy. Boulder: ILO and Lynne Rienne, pp 109-27.
[Available from the LSE library]
Brass, Tom, 2003. ‘Why Unfree Labour is Not “So-Called”: The Fictions of Jairus
Banaji’. Journal of Peasant Studies, 31 (1): 101–36.
[Available from InformaWorld]
Akurang-Parry, K.O., 2010, ‘Transformations in the feminization of unfree domestic
labour: a study of abaawa or prepubescent female servitude in modern Ghana’,
International Labor and Working-Class History 78: 28-47.
Rossi, B. (ed.), 2009, Reconfiguring Slavery: West African Trajectories. Liverpool:
Liverpool University Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Picherit, D., 2009, ‘’Workers, trust us!’ Labour middlemen and the rise of the lower
casets in Andhra Pradesh’, in J. Breman, I. Guerin and A. Prakash (eds), India’s
Unfree Workforce: Of Bondage Old and New, New Delhi: Oxford University
Press, pp. 259-83.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Andrees, B. and Belser, P. (eds), 2009: Forced labour: Coercion and exploitation in
the private economy. ILO and Lynne Rienne.
[Available from the LSE library]
ILO 2005, A global alliance against forced labour. Global Report under the Follow-up
to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work 2005.
International labour conference 93rd Session 2005. Report I (B). Geneva: ILO
[Available from the ILO]
Chan, A., 2000, ‘Globalization, China's Free (Read Bonded) Labour Market, and the
Chinese Trade Union’, in Asia Pacific Business Review, 6(3-4): 260-81
[Available from InformaWorld]
Rogaly, B. 2008, 'Migrant Workers in the ILO's Global Alliance Against Forced
Labour Report: a critical appraisal', Third World Quarterly 29(7): 1431-47
[Available from EBSCO]
Breman, J., 1990, ‘ “Even Dogs are Better Off ”: The Ongoing Battle Between
Capital and Labour in the Cane-Fields of Gujarat’, in Journal of Peasant Studies,
17(4): 546–608.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Banaji, J., 2003, ‘The Fictions of Free Labour: Contract, Coercion, and So-Called
Unfree Labour’. Historical Materialism, 11 (3): 69–95.
[Available from EBSCO]
Srivastava, R., 2005, ‘Bonded Labour in India: its Incidence and Pattern’, Special
Action Programme to Combat Forced Labour, Declaration/WP/43/2005. Geneva:
[Available from the ILO]
Anderson, B, and Rogaly, B, 2005, Forced Labour and Migration to the UK. Study
prepared by COMPAS in collaboration with the Trades Union Congress.
[Available from COMPAS]
van den Anker, C, 2004. ‘Contemporary Slavery, Global Justice and Globalization’. In
van den Anker, C. (ed), The Political Economy of New Slavery, Basingstoke:
Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 15–36.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Da Corta, L. and Venkateshwarlu, D.,1999. ‘Unfree Relations and the Feminisation of
Agricultural Labour in Andhra Pradesh’, Journal of Peasant Studies, 26 (2/3):71–
[Available from the SOAS library]
Rao, M., 1999, ‘Agrarian Power and Unfree Labour’. Journal of Peasant Studies, 26
(2/3): 242–62.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Bales, K., 2004, Disposable people: new slavery in the global economy, Berkeley:
University of California Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
7. Child labour
Child labour is also covered by international conventions. This week looks at
childrens’ work and child labour; its possible cultural embeddedness, and the
strategies for its eradication. What is the distinction between child labour and
childrens’ work? While notions of childhood in the North and the South may differ,
should this lead to different approaches to child labour? And is a ‘big bang’ approach
to child labour eradication better than a more measured approach? These issues are
dealt with within a wider discussion of the links between child labour and capitalist
development, including globalisation.
Core readings
Cigno, A., Rosati, F., and Guarcello, L., 2002,‘Does Globalization Increase Child
Labour?’ World Development, Volume 30(9), 1579-89
[Available from ScienceDirect]
Venkateswarlu, D., 2003, Child Labour and Trans-National Seed Companies in
Hybrid Cotton Seed Production in Andhra Pradesh. India Committee Of The
[Available from IndiaNet]
Nadvi, K. 2008. ‘Global standards, global governance and the organization of global
value chains.’ Journal of Economic Geography 8 (3) pp. 323–343
Lieten, G.K., 2008, ‘Tradition and Child Centred Approaches’ and ‘Child Labour’ in
Children, Structure and Agency. Realities across the developing world’. London:
Routledge e-book, 1-13 and 91-119
[Available from Dawsonera]
Additional readings
ILO, 2010, Accelerating action against child labour. Global Report under the followup to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work,
International Labour Conference 99th Session 2010 Report I(B), Chapter I: A
dynamic global picture, pp. 5-48
Cigno, A. and F. C. Rosati (2005). The economics of child labour. Oxford ; Toronto,
Oxford University Press.
IPEC (2011). Children in hazardous work: What we know, what we need to do. ILO.
Geneva, International Labour Organisation: 106.
Orazem, P. F., G. L. s. Sedlacek, et al. (2009). Child labor and education in Latin
America : an economic perspective. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.
ILO, 2006, ‘Making progress in combating child labour’, The end of child labour:
within reach. Global Report under the follow-up to the ILO Declaration on
Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. International Labour Conference,
95th Session 2006, Report I (B). Geneva: ILO, chapter 1, 5-28
[Available from the ILO]
Kandiyoti, D., Invisible to the world? The dynamics of forced child labour in the
cotton sector of Uzbekistan.
[Available from the SOAS website]
Hagemann, F., Diallo, Y., Etienne, A, Mehran, F., 2006, Global child labour trends
2000 to 2004. Geneva: ILO
[Available from the ILO]
International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour, 2007, IPEC action
against child labour. Highlights 2006, Geneva: ILO
[Available from the ILO]
Nieuwenhuys, O., 1994, Children’s Lifeworlds: Gender, Welfare and Labour in the
Developing World. Routledge, London.
[Available from the SOAS library
Kabeer, N., Nimbissan, G., Subrahmanian, R., 2003, ‘Needs versus rights? Child
labour, social exclusion and the challenge of universalising primary education’, in
Kabeer, N., Nimbissan, G., Subrahmanian, R., (eds), Child labour and the right to
education in South Asia – needs versus rights? London: Sage.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Fyfe, A., 1989, Child Labour. Polity Press, Cambridge
[Available from the SOAS library]
Goddard, V. and White, B., 1982, ‘Child Workers and Capitalist Development’,
Development and Change, 13(4).
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lee-Wright, P., 1990, Child Slaves. London: Earthscan.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Seabrook J., 2000, ‘Child Worker: The Shifting Debate’ Race and Class, Vol. 42 (2)
[Available from Sage]
Schlemmer B, 2000, The Exploited Child, Zed Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Boyden, J., B. Lingand, W. Myers, 1998, What Works for Working Children, SCF
[Available from the SOAS library]
Burnam E., 1996, 'Local, Global or Globalized? Child development and international
child rights legislation', Childhood 3: 45-66.
Chandresakhar, C.P., 1997, ‘The Economic Consequences of the Abolition of Child
Labour: An Indian Case Study’ in The Journal of Peasant Studies, 24 (3): 137-79
[Available from the SOAS library]
Kayongo Male, D.,and P. Walji, 1984, Children at Work in Kenya. OUP, Oxford
[Available from the SOAS library]
Liebel, M, 2004, A Will of Their Own: Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Working
Children, Zed Books, London, 2004
[Available from the SOAS library]
Ramachandran, V., 2001, Getting Children Back to School: Case Studies in Primary
Education, Sage, New Delhi.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Schildkrout, E., 1981, ‘The Employment of Children in Kano (Nigeria)’, in G.
Rodgers and G. Standing, eds., Child Work, Poverty and Underdevelopment.
International Labour Office, Geneva.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Zutshi, B. and M. Dutta (eds.) 2003, Child Labour Rehabilitation in India, New
[Available from the SOAS library]
Herath, G., and Sharma, K. (eds), 2007, Child Labour in South Asia. Aldershot:
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lieten, G.K., Srivastava, R., and Thorat, S. (eds), 2004, Small Hands in South Asia:
Child Labour in Perspective. New Delhi: Manohar 2004.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Hindman. H. (ed), 2009, The World of Child Labor. London: M E Sharpe
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lavalette, M., Cunningham, S., 2004, ‘Globalisation and child labour: protection,
liberation or anti-capitalism?’, in Munck, R. (ed.), 2004, Labour and
globalisation. Results and prospects. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 181205.
[Available from the SOAS library]
8. Decent work and social policies
The ‘decent work’ agenda has been the main vehicle for bringing labour issues back
into the development agenda of the international community. Since the late 1990s
ILO has successfully spearheaded this pro-labour offensive. The decent work agenda
has now been taken up by most trade unions, activists and related academics, and
forms the background for most pro-labour related policy debates and initiatives. This
week investigates the decent work agenda as well as some of its critics. Has it
become so all-encompassing that it is losing some of its relevance? In particular, is its
focus on national social policies and programmes warranted? Has it become a de
facto vehicle for globalisation? Or is it still an important means of improving the
conditions of the working poor?
Core readings
Standing, G. 2009, ‘The ILO: an agency for globalization?’ Development and
Change 39(3): 355-84.
[Available from EBSCO]
Vosko, L., 2002, ‘‘Decent Work’ the shifting role of the ILO and the struggle for
global social justice’, Global Social Policy 2(1) 19-42
[Available from Sage]
Hoffer, F., 2011, ‘Decent Work 2.0’, Global Labour Column November 14, 2011
Chen, M., 2008, ‘Informality and Social Protection: Theories and Realities’, IDS
Bulletin 39(2): 18-27
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
Additional readings
Rodgers, G, L. Swepston, E. Lee and J. van Daele, 2009, The International Labour
Organization and the quest for social justice, 1919-2009. Geneva: ILO
Standing, G., 2009, ‘Global Employment: Two Reports in Search of the Problem’,
Development and Change 40(6): 1319 -37
Barrientos, A., 2009, ‘Labour markets and the (hyphenated) welfare regime in Latin
America’, Economy and Society 38(1): 87-108.
Dion, M., 2010. Workers and Welfare: Comparative Institutional Change in
Twentieth-Century Mexico. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburg.
Anderson, P., 2011, ‘Lula’s Brazil’. London Review of Books 33(7) 3-12
Townsend, P. (ed), 2009, Building Decent Societies. Rethinking the role of social
security in development. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan and ILO
Soares, S, Osorio, R, Soares, F, Medeiros, M, and Zepeda, E, 2007, ‘Conditional
Cash Transfers in Brazil, Chile and Mexico: Impacts upon Inequality’,
International Poverty Centre Working Paper 35. Brasilia: International Poverty
Centre, UNDP.
[Available from the UNDP]
IILS 2008, ‘Redistribution through taxes and social transfers’, Ch 5 in IILS, World of
Work Report 2008. Income Inequalities in the Age of Financial Globalization.
Geneva: ILO. pp 127-52.
[Available from the ILO]
IILS 2008, ‘Decent work as a coherent policy package’, Ch 6 in IILS, World of Work
Report 2008. Income Inequalities in the Age of Financial Globalization. Geneva:
ILO.pp 153-160
[Available from the ILO]
IILS, 2009, ‘Decent Work as a cornerstone of the recovery: a global jobs pact’, The
Financial and Economic Crisis: A Decent Work Response. Geneva: ILO, pp. 3757,
[Available from the ILO]
Maupain, F, 2009, ‘New Foundation or New Façade? The ILO and the 2008
Declaration on Social Justice for a Fair Globalization’, The European Journal of
International Law 20(3)
Standing, G., ‘The ILO: an agency for globalization?’ Development and Change
39(3): 355-84.
[Available from EBSCO]
McKinley, T., 2008, ‘Economic Policies for Growth and Poverty Reduction: PRSPs,
Neoliberal Conditionalities and 'Post-Consensus' Alternatives’, IDS Bulletin 39(2):
[Available from Wiley InterScience
Rodgers, G., Kuptsch, C., (eds) 2008, Pursuing decent work goals: priorities for
research. [decent work case studies] Geneva: IILS and ILO,
[Available from the ILO]
Rodgers, G., 2007, ‘The goal of decent work’ IDS Bulletin 38(2): 63-6
[Available from Wiley InterScience]
ILO, 2004, Economic Security for a Better World, Geneva: ILO.
[Available from the LSE library]
ILO, 2010, World Social Security Report 2010-11: providing coverage in times of
crisis and beyond. Geneva: ILO,
Saith, A., 2006, ‘Social protection, decent work and development’, in Ghai, D. (ed),
2006 [as above], pp. 127-174
[Available from the ILO ]
Wright, E., 2004, ‘Basic Income Stakeholder Grants, and Class Analysis’, Politics
and Society, 32(1): 79-87.
[Available from Sage]
Mehrotra, S., and Biggeri, M., (eds), 2007, Asian informal workers. Global risks,
local protection. London: Routledge.
[Available from the SOAS libary]
Agarwala, R., 2006, ‘From work to welfare’, Critical Asian Studies 38(4): 419-44
[Available from EBSCO]
Barrientos, A and Hulme, D., 2008, ‘Embedding Social Protection in the Developing
World’ in A. Barrientos and D. Hulme (eds.) Social Protection for the Poor and
the Poorest: Concepts, Policies and Politics. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Barrientos, A., Claudio Santibanez. "New forms of social assistance and the
evolution of social protection in Latin America." Journal of Latin American
Studies 41(1) (2009): 87-108.
Barrientos, A., Jasmine Gideon, Maxine Molyneux. "New Development in Latin
America's Social Policy." Development and Change 39(5) (2008): 759-774.
Ambasta, P, Vijay Shankar, P and Shah, M (2008) ‘Two Years of NREGA: The Road
Ahead’, Economic and Political Weekly 43(8).
[Available from the SOAS library]
Deshinkar, P., 2009, ‘Extending labour inspections to the informal sector and
agriculture’, Chronic Poverty Research Centre Working Paper 154.
[Available from the Chronic Poverty Research Centre]
Evans, P., 2008. ‘Is an Alternative Globalization Possible?’, Politics and Society
36(2): 271-305
Hanlon, J., A Barrientos, D Hulme, 2010, Just Givce Money to the Poor. The
development revolution from the Global South. Stirling: Kumarien Press.
Ellis, F., S. Devereux, P White, 2009, Social protection in Africa. Cheltenham:
Edward Elgar.
Kabeer, N and S Cook, 2010, ‘Introduction: Overcoming Barriers to the Extension of
Social Protection: Lessons from the Asia Region’, IDS Bulletin 41(4): 1- 11.
Cook, S. and Kabeer, N. (eds), 2010, Social Protection as Development Policy: Asian
Perspectives. New Delhi: Routledge
[Cook, S. and Kabeer, N.], 2010, ‘social protection in asia programme – working
papers and final reports,
9 Organising the working poor: trade unions, social movements and NGOs
This week looks at attempts by the working poor to improve their conditions. It
focuses on the role of trade unions, social movements and NGOs. Trade unions have
been slow to take up the demands of the largely unorganised working poor. This
week looks at the conditions for labour struggles; approaches taken by trade unions;
campaigns and actions by the working poor and their organisations; and the role of
other social actors such as NGOs and social movements.
Core readings
Ramasamy, P., 2005, ‘Labour and Globalization: Towards a New Internationalism?’,
in Labour Capital and Society, 38(1&2): 5-35
[Available from EBSCO]
Lier, C., Stokke, K., 2006, ‘Maximum working class unity? Challenges to local social
movement unionism in Cape Town’, Antipode 38(4): 802-24.
[Available from EBSCO]
Ngai, P., C. Chan, C. King, and J. Chan, 2010. ‘The Role of the State, Labour
Policyand Migrant Workers’ Struggles in Globalized China,’ Global Labour
Journal: 1(1) 132-151. Available at:
Burawoy, M., 2010. ‘From Polanyi to Pollyanna: The False Optimism of Global
Labor Studies’, Global Labour Journal 1(2) 301-313. Available at:
Additional readings
Silver, B., 2003, ‘Introduction’; in ‘Forces of Labor. Workers’ Movements and
Globalization since 1870’ (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), pp. 1-40
[Available from the SOAS library]
P. Waterman, 2001, ’Trade Union Internationalism in the Age of Seattle”, Antipode,
33: 312-36
[Available from EBSCO]
Munch, R., 2004, ‘Globalization, Labor and the ‘Polanyi Problem’’, Labor History,
45(3): 251-69.
[Available from EBSCO]
Munck, Ronaldo P., 2010. ‘Globalization and the Labour Movement: Challenges and
Responses,’ Global Labour Journal 1(2), 218-232. Available at:
Edward Webster, Rob Lambert, Andries Bezuidenhout, 2008. Grounding
Globalization: Labour in the Age of Insecurity. Oxford: Blackwell.
Gallin, D., 2001, ‘Propositions on Trade Unions and Informal Employment in Times
of Globalisation, Antipode 33 (3): 531-49
[Available from EBSCO]
Behrens, M., Hamann, K., Hurd, R., 2004, ‘Conceptualizing Labour Union
Revitalization’ in Frege, C., and Kelly, J. (eds.), Varieties of Unionism: Strategies
for Union Revitalization in a Globalizing Economy, Oxford: Oxford University
Press, pp. 11-29.
[Available from the Birkbeck library]
Arrighi, G. ,1990, ‘Marxist Century, American Century: The Making and Remaking
of the World Labour Movement’, in New Left Review, 179: 29-63.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Gumbrell-McCormick, G., 2004, ‘The ICFTU and the world economy: a historical
persepctive’, in Munck, R. (ed.), 2004, Labour and globalisation. Results and
prospects. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, pp. 34-51.
[Available from the SOAS Library]
Hyman, R., 2004, ‘An emerging agenda for trade unions?’ in Munck, R. (ed.), 2004,
Labour and globalisation. Results and prospects. Liverpool: Liverpool University
Press, pp. 19-33
[Available from the SOAS library]
Hyman, R., 2002, ‘The International Labour Movement on the Threshold of Two
Centuries: Agitation, Organisation, Bureaucracy, Diplomacy’
[Available from abark
van der Linden, M., 2008, ‘Strikes’; ‘Unions’, in van der Linden, M: Workers of the
world. Essays toward a global labor history. Leiden: Brill, pp 173-208 and 219258.
[Available from This is Forever]
Bowring, F. 2004, ‘From the Mass Worker to the Multitude: A Theoretical
Contextualisation of Hardt and Negri’s Empire’, Capital & Class, 83:101-132
[Available from EBSCO]
Moody, K. 1997, ‘Towards an International Social-Movement Unionism’, in New
Left Review, Vol. 1, Nr 225: 52-72
[Available from the SOAS library]
…country specific and regional studies
Okafor, O., 2009, ‘Irrigating the famished fields: the impact of labour-led struggle on
policy and action in Nigeria (1999-2007)’, Journal of Contemporary African
Studies 27(2): 159-75.
[Available from InformaWorld]
Fischer, G., 2011. ‘Power Repertoires and the Transformation of Tanzanian Trade
Unions,’ Global Labour Journal 2(2), 125-147.Available at:
Clarke, M., 2006, ‘The working poor: labour market reform and unprotected workers
in the South African retail sector’, in Davies, M., and Ryner, M., Poverty and the
production of World politics. Unprotected workers in the global political
economy, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 154-177
[Available from the SOAS library]
Iranzo, C., and T. Patruyo, 2002,’Trade Unionism and Globalization: Thoughts from
Latin America’, Current Sociology, v. 50(1): 57-74.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Healy, T., 2006, ‘The condition of hegemony and labour militancy: the restructuring
of gender and production patterns in Mexico’, in Davies, M., and Ryner, M.,
Poverty and the production of World politics. Unprotected workers in the global
political economy, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 178-203.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Zhu, Y., 2004, ‘Workers, Unions and the State: Migrant Workers in China’s Labourintensive Foreign Enterprises’ Development and Change, 35(5), 1011-36.
[Available from EBSCO]
Lee, C. K., 2007, Against the Law: Labor Protests in China’s Rustbelt and Sunbelt,
Berkeley: University of California Press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Wang, H., R P Appelbaum, F Degiuli, N Lichtenstein, 2009, ‘China’s new labour
contract law: is China moving towards increased power for workers?’, Third
World Quarterly 30(3) 485-501
China Labour Bulletin, 2009, Going it Alone. The Workers’ Movement in China
(2007-2008). Research reports
Nang, L P and P Ngai, 2009, ‘The radicalisation of the new Chinese working class: a
case study of collective action in the gemstone industry’, Third World Quarterly
30(3) 551-65
Feng, C., 2003, Industrial Restructuring and Workers’ Resistance in China, Modern
China, 29(2): 237-62.
[Available from JSTOR]
Chang, D., 2007, ‘When Capital Becomes Society: The Recomposition of Capitalist
Work and New Labor Activism in Korea’, in Hart-Landsberg, M., Jeong, S. and
Westra, R., (eds), Marxist Perspectives on South Korea in the Global Economy,
London: Ashgate.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lee, Ching Kwan, 2007. Against the Law: Labor Protests in China’s Rustbelt and
Sunbelt. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.
Chun, J. J., 2008, ‘The Contested Politics of Gender and Irregular Employment: the
Revitalization of the South Korean Democratic Labour Movement,’ in Bieler, A.,
Lindberg, I. and Pillay, D., eds., Labour and the Challenges of Globalisation:
What Prospects for Transnational Solidarity?. London: Pluto Press. [many good
case studies in this volume!]
[Available from the SOAS library]
Glassman, J., Park, B., Choi, Y., 2008, ‘Failed Internationalism and Social
Movement Decline: The Cases of South Korea and Thailand’, Critical Asian
Studies, 40(3): 339-72.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Brown, A. 2004, Labour, Politics and the State in Industrializing Thailand, London:
Routledge Curzon.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Sundar, K.R.S., 2005, ‘State in industrial relations system in India: from corporatist
to neo-liberal?’, The Indian Journal of Labour Economics, 48(4): 917–37.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Sundar, K.R.S., 2008, ‘What should Indian trade unions do? An agenda for trade
unions at the risk of sermonising!’, The Indian Journal of Labour Economics,
51(4): 1065–82.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Lindell, I (ed), 2010. Africa's informal workers: collective agency, alliances and
transnational organizing in urban Africa. London: Zed Books
Jose, A.V. (ed.), 2002, Organized Labour in the 21st Century. Geneva: IILS [a
collection of country case studies]
[Available from EkoHist]
Bergene, A.,, S. Endresen, H. Knutsen 2010. Missing Links in Labour Geography.
10. Corporate Social Responsibility and international development organisations
The course rounds off by taking a look at the (un?)importance of Northern ethical
consumer based movements for the working poor in the South. The US antisweatshop movements of the 1990s and the related campaigns against the big brand
names’ use of suppliers who employed child labour prompted the development of a
Corporate Social Responsibility agenda. International development agencies, NGOs
and social movements are active in the area as well. This week covers such actors,
their agendas and their impact. The week will also summarise the whole course with
a focus on the underlying trends influencing the working poor, and an assessment of
related movements and policy initiatives.
Core readings
O’Laughlin, B., 2008, ‘Governing Capital? Corporate Social Responsibility and the
Limits of Regulation', Development and Change 39(6): 945-57.
[Available from EBSCO]
De Neve, G. 2009, ‘Power, Inequality and Corporate Social Responsibility: The
Politics of Ethical Compliance in the South Indian Garment Industry’ Economic
and Political Weekly 44 (22): 63-71.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Wells, D., 2009, ‘Local worker struggles in the global South: reconsidering Northern
impacts on international labour standards’, Third World Quarterly 30(3): 567-79
[Available from the SOAS library]
Chang, D. and Wong, M., 2005, ‘After Consumer Movement: Toward a New
International Labour Activism in the Global Garment Industry’, Labour, Capital
and Society, 38(1&2): 126-55
[Available from EBSCO]
Additional readings
…CSR, ethical trade etc
Barrientos, S. and S. Smith 2007, ‘Do Workers Benefit from Ethical Trade?
Assessing Codes of Labour Practice in Global Production Systems’, Third World
Quarterly, Vol. 28 (4) 713-29.
[Avaialble from EBSCO]
Jenkins, R., Pearson, R. and Seyfang, G. 2002, ‘Corporate Responsibility and Labor
Rights. Codes of Conduct in the Global Economy’, London: Earthscan
[Available from Dawsonera]
Jenkins, R. 2005, ‘Globalization, corporate social responsibility and poverty’,
International Affairs 81(3), 525-40.
[Available from EBSCO]
Kabeer, N., 2004, ‘Globalisation, Labor Standards and Women's Rights. Dilemmas of
Collective (in)Action in an Interdependent World.’ Feminist Economics 10.1: 337.
[Available from EBSCO]
Frank, D., 2003, ‘Where Are the Workers in Consumer-Worker Alliances? Class
Dynamics and the History of Consumer-Labor Campaigns’, Politics & Society,
31(3): 363-79.
[Available from Sage]
Blowfield, M. and Frynas, J.G., 2005, ‘Setting new agendas: critical perspectives on
corporate social responsibility in the developing world’, International Affairs
81(3), 499-513. [special issue on corporate social responsibility]
[Available from EBSCO
Esbenshade, J., 2004, Monitoring sweatshops. Workers, consumers and the global
apparel industry. Philadelphia: Temple University Press
[Available from the SOAS library]
Barrientos, S. 2008, ‘Voluntary Initiatives and Corporate Codes of Labour
Development and Change, Vol. 39 (6) 1-14.
Barrientos, S. 2007, ‘Gender, codes and labour standards in Global Production
systems’ in I. van Staveren, D. Elson, C. Grown and N. Cagatay (eds) The
Feminist Economics of Trade, Routledge, London.
[Available from the LSE library]
UN Global Compact (n.d.): About the Global Compact.
[Available from the UN Global Compact]
Traub-Werner, M., Cravey, A., 2002, ‘Spatiality, sweatshops and solidarity in
Guatamala’, Social & Cultural geography 3(4): 383-401.
[Available from Senate House library]
Gay Seidman (2007) Beyond the Boycott: Labor Rights, Human Rights, and
Transnational Activism. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
…International NGOs, bilateral development organisations etc
Eade, D., Leather, A., 2005, Development NGOs and labor unions. Terms of
engagement. Bloomfield: Kumarian press.
[Available from the SOAS library]
Burgoon, B and W Jacoby, 2004, ‘Patch-work solidarity: describing and explaining
US and European labour internationalism’, Review of International Political
Economy, 11(5), pp. 849-79.
[Available from InformaWorld]
DFID, 2004. Labour standards and poverty reduction. Report. London: DFID
[Available from DFID]
Eade, D., 2004, ‘International NGOs and unions in the South: world apart or allies in
the struggle?’, Development in Practice 14(1&2): 71-84
[Available from EBSCO]
Tsogas, G. (1999), ‘Labour standards in international trade agreements: an
assessment of the arguments’, The international Journal of Human Resource
Managament 10(2), pp. 351-75.
[Available from EBSCO]
Gregoratti, C. and Miller, D., 2011. ‘International Framework Agreements for
Workers’ Rights? Insights from River Rich Cambodia,’ Global Labour Journal
2(2) 84-105.
Available at:
REMEMBER: the final date for submission of your essay is the last Thursday of
Term 2