By Alfred D. Chandler, Bruce Mazlish
Representing a path-breaking attempt to examine multinational companies within the around, this ebook emphasizes their scope, historical past and improvement, cultural and social implications, and governance difficulties. beginning with a primer on MNCs, 8 chapters are dedicated to various elements, together with international elites. Their technique makes readers realize that MNCs aren't only financial entities, yet are a part of a posh interaction of things. In flip, learning MNCs will result in reexamination of the globalization approach.
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Additional resources for Leviathans: Multinational Corporations and the New Global History
In the late 19th century, Frederick Taylor introduced the concept of “scientific management” – analysis that identifies the specific division of labor in a process that would maximize production efficiency. Henry Ford consulted with Taylor in designing the world’s first large-scale moving assembly line in 1913. In modern MNCs, economies of scale occur not only through the division of labor but by combining, and often replacing, human labor with mechanized production. Investment in large-scale capital equipment and the latest production technologies often requires significant up-front costs.
Here nongovernment organizations (NGOs) have been playing an important role. For example, the NGO Forest Ethics recently encouraged the large copying and printing chain Kinkos to commit to buying paper from sustainable sources. The Rainforest Action Network has also extracted significant promises from the lumber company Boise Cascade to stop logging and purchasing trees from endangered forests. That is not, however, the whole story; important pieces of the puzzle depend on the relationships among corporations – especially the pressure that a firm can exert on a supplier.
Unilever manages its employees’ retirement accounts, financing them through equities (57% of pension assets), bonds (27%), and other investments (16%). In 2002, Unilever reported about $13 billion in pension plan assets with pension liabilities of about $17 billion. Given the time lags involved in pension management, the company calculates its liabilities and assets based on assumptions about rates of return on investments, inflation rates, and salary growth. Unilever’s ability to meet its long-term pension obligations depends heavily on whether these assumptions turn out to be accurate.