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The purpose of this article is to record and analyse the historical circumstances in which Singapore complemented its legacy of British-type collective bargaining with the compulsory arbitration system long practiced in Australia. It notes the role of Australians (particularly one Australian industrial relations scholar at the University of Malaya) in the inception and adoption of industrial arbitration in Singapore. It seeks to identify, analyse, explain and assess the extent of the subsequent divergence of Singapore’s regulatory industrial relations regime from that of Australia since the 1960s. In doing so, it contributes to Asia-Pacific labour history and adds to the literature on international and comparative labour relations with its focus on cross-national influences on national industrial relations regimes.
With manufacturers seeking investment opportunities in Africa, it is timely to explore the interaction of advanced manufacturing technology (AMT) and human resource management approaches there. Because research elsewhere suggests that the effects of the interaction differ across national boundaries, we investigated empowerment approaches and AMT utilisation in Nigeria and New Zealand. Using operational-level survey data from 153 manufacturing managers/CEOs in both countries, we explored the role of national culture on managerial attitudes towards employee empowerment during AMT adoption. Drawing on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions, our results suggest that the observed differences in AMT–empowerment interface are attributable to different national values. The results specifically indicated that during AMT adoption, New Zealand’s liberal culture encourages managers to empower employees more than does Nigeria’s authoritarian one. The results would particularly assist practitioners to recognise the traditional/conservative nature of African values when practicing HR in a country like Nigeria.
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