Beyond commodification: re‐reading the future of work

Beyond commodification: re‐reading the future of work A widely held supposition is that goods and services are increasingly produced and delivered for monetised exchange by capitalist firms in pursuit of profit. The result of this view of an ongoing encroachment of the market is that there is only one perceived future for work and it is one characterised by an ever more commodified world. The aim of this paper is to evaluate critically this discourse. Analysing the balance between commodified and non‐commodified work in the advanced economies, a large non‐commodified sphere is identified that, if anything, is found to be expanding relative to the commodified realm. Rather than reading the future of work as a natural and unstoppable progression towards a victorious, all‐powerful and hegemonic commodity economy, this paper thus opens up the feasibility of alternative futures beyond a commodified world. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png foresight Emerald Publishing

Beyond commodification: re‐reading the future of work

foresight, Volume 6 (6): 9 – Dec 1, 2004

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2004 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1463-6689
DOI
10.1108/14636680410569849
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

A widely held supposition is that goods and services are increasingly produced and delivered for monetised exchange by capitalist firms in pursuit of profit. The result of this view of an ongoing encroachment of the market is that there is only one perceived future for work and it is one characterised by an ever more commodified world. The aim of this paper is to evaluate critically this discourse. Analysing the balance between commodified and non‐commodified work in the advanced economies, a large non‐commodified sphere is identified that, if anything, is found to be expanding relative to the commodified realm. Rather than reading the future of work as a natural and unstoppable progression towards a victorious, all‐powerful and hegemonic commodity economy, this paper thus opens up the feasibility of alternative futures beyond a commodified world.

Journal

foresightEmerald Publishing

Published: Dec 1, 2004

Keywords: Market economy; Capitalist systems; Social economics

References

  • Tales of the unexpected: exploring car boot sales as marginal spaces of contemporary consumption
    Crewe, L.; Gregson, N.
  • The Limits to Capital
    Harvey, D.
  • Shelter from the storm? Geographies of regard in the worlds of horticultural consumption and production
    Lee, R.
  • Alternative Economic Spaces
    Leyshon, A.; Lee, R.; Williams, C.C. (Eds)
  • Enterprise discourse and executive talk: stories that destabilize the company
    O'Neill, P.; Gibson‐Graham, J.K.
  • A critical evaluation of the commodification thesis
    Williams, C.C.
  • Evaluating the penetration of the commodity economy
    Williams, C.C.
  • Reconciling economic and cultural explanations for participation in alternative consumption spaces
    Williams, C.C.; Paddock, C.

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