Event Title

Content Management Systems and the Degradation of Intellectual Work in the 21st Century

Start Date

17-10-2009 2:00 PM

End Date

17-10-2009 3:30 PM

Description

This paper was presented at Paper Session 2b: Networked Organization.

Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Systems confer numerous advantages to corporations including superior data management, streamlining of office workflows and potential costs savings. However, a content analysis of ECM system technical white papers reveals that such systems are potentially disastrous to intellectual workers. The trends of increasing management control, routinization and deskilling observed and critiqued by Harry Braverman in the 20th century in industrial labour are fully realized in intellectual labour by such systems. In addition to the detailed surveillance capabilities of content management systems (CMS), the employer captures and retains the entire iterative history of the documents produced by its workers. Content management systems deskill workers by subdividing intellectual tasks into the smallest possible constituent parts and automating as many tasks as possible. Content management systems provide some potential opportunities for the reskilling of workers, but a critical examination of the effects of these systems is necessary to determine their exact influence on digital work.

 
Oct 17th, 2:00 PM Oct 17th, 3:30 PM

Content Management Systems and the Degradation of Intellectual Work in the 21st Century

This paper was presented at Paper Session 2b: Networked Organization.

Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Systems confer numerous advantages to corporations including superior data management, streamlining of office workflows and potential costs savings. However, a content analysis of ECM system technical white papers reveals that such systems are potentially disastrous to intellectual workers. The trends of increasing management control, routinization and deskilling observed and critiqued by Harry Braverman in the 20th century in industrial labour are fully realized in intellectual labour by such systems. In addition to the detailed surveillance capabilities of content management systems (CMS), the employer captures and retains the entire iterative history of the documents produced by its workers. Content management systems deskill workers by subdividing intellectual tasks into the smallest possible constituent parts and automating as many tasks as possible. Content management systems provide some potential opportunities for the reskilling of workers, but a critical examination of the effects of these systems is necessary to determine their exact influence on digital work.