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Flexibility, skill and technical change in UK retailing.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>07/1995
<mark>Journal</mark>The Service Industries Journal
Issue number3
Number of pages14
Pages (from-to)229-242
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This article examines employment patterns in British retailing during the 1980s. It focuses on two debates central to contemporary economic sociology: the flexibility thesis and theories of skill and technical change. The data derive fiom the ESRC's Social Change and Economic Life Initiative and represent a sample of 72 retailing establishments fiom six localities in Britain. The article reveals that technological change had not produced much in the way of deskilling: rather, it had enskilled the work of already qualified and trained employees. Whilst part-time employment had increased in many stores, there was little evidence of any significant growth of other kinds of peripheral labour.