Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


This research project combines two research areas which so far have rarely been linked with each other: companies' restructuring processes based on modern ICT (Information and Communication Technology, hereafter ICT or ICTs) and the demand for related new skills and competencies, on the one hand, and social exclusion risks on the other hand.
Our empirical findings show that the application of modern ICTs within the companies of the regions participating in the project has progressed significantly; increasingly more complex technical solutions are introduced. However, this does not automatically imply a change in the usage of ICTs, there is no clear trend from automation and control technology towards information and communication technology, as is often assumed. Instead, we have to stress the multi-functionality of modern ICTs: they can serve several functions at the same time. Due to the fact that modern ICT represent multi-functional technologies, we cannot identify a clear trend towards a new organisation logic represented by the Leitbild of a network organisation. Instead, companies apply different types of techno-organisation structures: low-tech Fordism and high-tech Fordism as well as low-tech network organisations and high-tech network organisations. These can be seen as evolvong paths of techno-organisational restructuring. The ICT-based network organisation is actually not very widespread yet; our research suggests the conclusion that companies in the participating regions are structurally more conservative.

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