In the last quarter of the 20th century, many firms significantly expanded their operations across national borders. It has been argued that, as a result, they have become disembedded from the national economic fields in which they conduct their business and have experienced a race to the bottom in their corporate labor policy. This dissertation argues that this contention does not accurately describe the recent development of transnational firms and their corporate labor policy. Rather, transnational firms experienced a significant shift in their dual embeddedness in national and transnational economic fields. They were restructured in line with the competitive conditions in the transnational economic field, but the competitive conditions in the national economic fields continue to be of great importance for their corporate labor policy. Consequently, the recent development of their corporate labor policy is characterized by processes of centralization, instrumentalization, and polarization.

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R.J. van der Veen (Romke) , J. Heilbron (Johan)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Quak, S. (2012, June 28). Transnational Firms and their Corporate Labor Policy: Case Studies on Philips and ING in the Netherlands and the United States, 1980–2010. Retrieved from