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International Sociological Association
Research Committee on Participation, Organizational Democracy and Self-Management RC10
Main page

Published in pdf ISA Bulletin number 30, year 1982
Prepared by Kurt Jonassohn
ISA Executive Secretary 1974-1982

Origins

Scholarly activities in relation to self-management that can be said were at the origins of the Research Committee recognized by ISA in August 1978, are basically the first two International Conferences on "Participation, Workers' Control and Self-Management", held in Dubrovnik (Yugoslavia) and in Paris (France).

The First International Conference on "Participation and Self-Management” was held at Dubrovnik (Yugoslavia), December 13-17, 1972. Five volumes containing 69 papers were edited at Zagreb in 1972-73:

  • PRVA MEDUNARODNA KONFERENCIA O PARTICIPACIJI I SAMOUPRAVLJANJU. Reports, Vol. I, Zagreb, 1972 (English and French).
  • PARTICIPATION AND SELF-MANAGEMENT. Vol. II, Zagreb, 1972 (English and French).
  • PARTICIPATION AND SELF-MANAGEMENT. Vol. III: WORKERS' MOVEMENT AND WORKERS' CONTROL. Zagreb, 1973 (English and French).
  • PARTICIPATION AND SELF-MANAGEMENT. Vol. IV: HIERARCHICAL ORGANIZATIONS. Zagreb, 1973 (English and French).
  • PARTICIPATION AND SELF-MANAGEMENT. Vol. IV: SOCIAL SYSTEM AND PARTICIPATION. Zagreb, 1973 (English and French).

The Second International Conference on Participation, Workers' Control and Self-Management, was held in Paris, September 7-10, 1977. There were six sections with different topics:

Section 1: Political Conditions for Generalized Self-Management (37 papers and 58 participants).
Section 2: Self-Management and Labor Movements (32 papers and 45 participants).
Section 3: The Democratization of the Enterprise (60 papers and 118 participants).
Section 4: Planning and Self-Management (23 papers and 45 participants).
Section 5: Self-Management and Community Organization: Regions and Minorities (12 papers, 18 participants).
Section 6: Culture, Human Needs and Self-Management. The Self-Management of Information and Education (38 papers, 50 participants).

49 other persons participated at the Conference.

At the same time as the Research Committee was officially recognized at Uppsala (August, 1978); it developed a three-session program as an Ad Hoc Group:

S.1: Political Conditions for Generalized Self-Management.
S.2: Political Conditions for Generalized Self-Management.
S.3: Political Conditions for Generalized Self-Management.

14 papers were presented in these sessions, from people of many countries: USA (5), Yugoslavia (2), Canada (2), Australia (1), Denmark (1), France (1), The Netherlands (1), Sweden (1).

Executive and Members

The first provisional Board was chosen at the first business meeting, at Uppsala (August, 78). The officers were the following:

Chairperson: Rudi Supek (Yugoslavia)
Secretary: Casten von Otter (Sweden)
Delegate to the RC: Veljko Rus (Yugoslavia)

The delegate to the RC and the Secretary were in charge of the election, held by mail ballots in 1979. Of 110 persons registered in the Research Committee, 95 delivered their votes by mail (January, 1979). The newly elected persons were:

Chairperson: Veljko Rus (Yugoslavia)
Vice-Chairperson: Bjorn Gustavsen (Norway)
Other members: Eric Batstone, Yvon Bourdet, Cornelius Lammers, Steven Deutsch, Akihiro Ishikawa

In November 1979, there were 130 members at the Research Committee.

At the first business meeting held in Uppsala (August 78) it was accepted the idea to establish closer cooperation with 2 other RCs, namely Sociology of Organization (RC 17) and COCTA (RC 35). Other organisms and groups of interest to contact were: "Cornell Group”, CICRA and EGOS (we don't have information on these organizations).

The RC was also interested in having some publicity in publications such as ISA Bulletin, CICRA Newsletter, Organizational Studies, and Economic and Industrial Democracy. In the latter two, it was suggested to submit interesting papers that are not being published in the Sage Series.

An attempt would be made to arrange 2 workshops per year, each on a selected theme. At the same time, it was planned to encourage the constitution of smaller groups of 20-30 members, specialized on particular problems and/or on a regional base.

At the first meeting of the Managing Board (Oct. 79), it was agreed to make a particular effort to recruit members from regions then under-represented: Akihiro Ishikawa was to investigate the possibility of developing a regional Committee covering Asia and the Pacific; Steven Deutsch was to investigate similar possibilities for Latin America; and more tentatively, Eric Batstone would seek to investigate the extent of any interest in Africa.

Meetings

Workshop on "The Work Environment and Co-determination in the Public Sector". It was held in October 1979, and organized by Bjorn Gustavsen in Oslo.

Veljko Rus arranged a workshop on Participation at Work and Political Participation, which took place at Dubrovnik (Yugoslavia) in April 1980. Akihiro Ishikawa organized the third workshop (November 1980, Tokyo) with the title: "Employment and Participation", 30 participants from 16 European and Asian countries contributed 20 papers which will be printed as a book in 1982.

At the Yugoslav Centre for Theory and Practice of Self-management (Kardeljeva ploscad 1, Ljubljana, Yugoslavia) the documentation center of RC 10 is established. The documentation center is collecting all papers, articles and books produced by the members of RC 10. They are available to the members on the spot and/or will be sent to them when the demand is expressed.

Publications

  • Tom R. Burns, Lars Erik Karlsson and Veljko Rus: “Work and Power, The Liberation of Work and the Control of Political Power", (Sage Studies in International Sociology 18.) 392 pp. London: Sage, 1979.
  • Veljko Rus, Akihiro Ishikawa, Thomas Woodhouse: "Employment and Participation. Industrial Democracy in Crisis". Chuo University Press, Japan, 1982.

 

 

 
2014-03-05
International Sociological Association
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