Lean Work examines the controversial Japanese model of "lean production" and its impact on work and workers in the global auto industry. Lean production is said to replace the narrowly specialized and repetitive jobs in mass production with teams of cross-trained workers who are empowered to rotate tasks and improve the system.
Measuring these claims of a humanized work process against the available evidence from auto companies around the world, Lean Work provides a comparative focus rarely found in standard accounts of the "new factory." Contributing authors from North America, Europe, and Asia, offer a unique perspective for evaluating the "lean" workplace. Focusing on the shop-floor perspective of workers, they present new and important evidence drawn from in-depth case studies, surveys, structured interviews, and participant-observer data.