Seminar Papers, Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University
The Division of Labor Within Firms
Abstract: The paper examines the determinants of the division of
labor within firms. It provides an explanation of the pervasive change in
work organization away from the traditional functional departments and
towards multi-tasking and job rotation. Whereas the existing literature on
the division of labor within firms emphasizes the returns from
specialization and the need for coordination of the work of different
workers, the present analysis focuses on the returns from multi-tasking,
which is shown to arise from informational and technological
complementarities among tasks as well as from the exploitation of the
versatility of human capital.
Keywords: Division of labor; specialization; multi-tasking; organization of work; technological change; information flows; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: J23; J24; L23; M12; O33; (follow links to similar papers)
11 pages, October 30, 1997
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