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Book description

Downsizing is one of the most frequently used business strategies for reducing costs, returning firms to profit or for restructuring businesses following takeovers, mergers and acquisitions. Downsizing measures are also set to become much more prevalent in the public sector as governments seek to restrict levels of public spending. This book is one of the first to provide a thorough study of downsizing from a global perspective. It examines the phenomenon in its entirety, exploring how it is initiated and what the process of downsizing looks like. It also looks at the effects of downsizing at a number of different levels, from the individual (e.g., motivational effects, effects on health and stress levels) to the organizational (e.g., financial outcomes, reputational and productivity outcomes). Written by an international team of experts, the book provides a comprehensive overview of downsizing that examines both the strategic and human implications of this process.


‘Cooper, Pandey, and Quick have captured the most important information on the topic of downsizing available to date. In an era when downsizing is pervasive, its impact enormous, and its implementation still uncertain, this is a must-have book both for scholars and researchers as well as for leaders and practitioners who face the need to downsize.’

Kim Cameron - William Russell Kelly Professor of Management and Organizations, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

‘When organizational leaders hire people, they instigate a social contract that cannot simply be forgotten when times are hard. On the contrary, these are the times when true leaders come to the fore. This book tackles the important topic of downsizing with intelligence and sensitivity, taking a kaleidoscopic view integrating the salient elements of life in organizations. Anybody who is dealing with the challenges that downsizing brings would be wise to get hold of this book as it gives invaluable advice in how to turn such demanding situations into more constructive outcomes.’

Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries - Clinical Professor of Leadership and Organizational Change and Raoul de Vitry d'Avaucourt Chaired Professor of Leadership Development, INSEAD

‘This book provides a series of chapters from leading academic researchers on the issue of downsizing. It pulls together contemporary findings and ideas on the macro and micro economic causes of downsizing, the way in which the strategy risks becoming institutionalised, the management of job loss, the individual experience of downsizing, and the subsequent impact that it has. It provides a timely analysis of a business strategy that will persist throughout this decade.’

Paul Sparrow - Professor of International Human Resource Management and Director of the Centre for Performance-led HR, Lancaster University Management School

‘As downsizing has become ubiquitous in today's business organizations, it is about time to take a deep, rigorous, and multidisciplinary look at it. This book does just that, and in so doing, provides a state of the art description, critique, and prescription for both academics and practitioners.’

Patrick M. Wright - William J. Conaty GE Professor of Strategic Human Resources, Cornell University

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