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Earth Sciences & Geography - Geography | Labor in a Globalizing City - Economic Restructuring in São Paulo, Brazil

Labor in a Globalizing City

Economic Restructuring in São Paulo, Brazil

Buechler, Simone Judith

2014, XIV, 340 p. 32 illus. in color.

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  • The book challenges several of the on-going theories and received notions about industrial restructuring, globalization and labor
  • Other similar books do not have a focus on the impact of economic globalization on labor
  • The book provides a unique, in-depth look at the city of São Paulo and its workers and inhabitants

The extraordinary stories of low-income women living in São Paulo, industrial case studies and the details of three squatter settlements, and communities in the periphery researched in Simone Buechler’s book, Labor in a Globalizing City, allow us to better understand the period of economic transformation in São Paulo from 1996 to 2003.  Buechler’s in-depth ethnographic research over a period of 17 years include interviews with a variety of social actors ranging from favela inhabitants to Wall Street bankers. Buechler examines the paradox of a globalizing city with highly developed financial, service, and industrial sectors, but at the same time a growing sector of microenterprises, degraded labor, considerable unemployment, unprecedented inequality, and precarious infrastructure in its low-income communities. The author argues that informalization and low-income women’s labor are an integral part of the global economy.  Other countries are continuing to use the same kind of neo-liberal economic model even though once again with the latest global financial crisis, it has proven to be detrimental to many workers.


Content Level » Research

Keywords » Globalization - Impact of Global Economic Restructuring - Industrial mass production - Unemployment Crisis - Urban Labor Market

Related subjects » Geography - Labor Economics - Microeconomics / Industrial Organization

Table of contents 

Introduction.- The Spectrum of Voices in the São Paulo Economy.- Six Industrial Case Studies: Internal and External Flexibilization and Technological Change.- The History, Politics, and Economies of Three Communities and their Inhabitants.- Outsourcing Production and Commerce: A Close Examination of Unregistered Salaried Workers, Sweatshop Workers, Homeworkers and Ambulant Vendors for Firms.- The Increasingly Precarious Nature of Self-Employment.- “Destiny is not set in stone”: Social Actors, Cooperatives, and Local Coalition-Building.- Conclusion.

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