Dissertation Abstracts

Globalisation of Services Production — Economic and Social Upgrading in Support-service Industry Catering to International ICT-ITES firms in Mumbai

Author: Kumar, Randhir , randhirtiss@gmail.com
Department: Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences
University: University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Supervisor: Niels Beerepoot
Year of completion: 2016
Language of dissertation: English

Keywords: Global Production Networks , Support Services , Labour , ICT-ITES
Areas of Research: Local-Global Relations , Economy and Society , Work


The ICT-ITES sector in India has been a major driver of economic growth and is deemed to provide a range of opportunities for cognitive-cultural (knowledge) workers. In the past decade, extensive research has been conducted on access to the sector and opportunities for upward labour mobility. Surprisingly, few studies have focused on the firms and workers indirectly engaged in the ICT-ITES sector and whether and how they are able to benefit from the growth of the sector. Using the concepts of economic upgrading and social upgrading in Global Production Networks, this thesis empirically assesses the less-explored case of indirect jobs and business opportunities created in the support-service segments (security, facilities and cab-services) serving ICT-ITES firms in Mumbai, India. Each empirical chapter deals with the dimensions of either economic upgrading (of firms) or social upgrading (of workers) in the support-service industry to present a more nuanced understanding of the local outcomes of ICT-ITES firms’ functioning. The thesis contributes to debates on service-sector-led development in South Asia (India) by identifying how it affects people and businesses, indirectly involved in the ICT-ITES sector.

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