039. Manufactured x GIZ FABRIC: Kong Athit and Dr. Mark Anner on Workers and Factory Management Collaborating to Advocate a Bigger Piece of the Pie Part 1

This is part one of our conversation with Dr. Mark Anner and union leader Kong Athit. What would it take for workers and factory management to work together to advocate for a bigger piece of the pie, so to speak? [...]
13 Apr 2021
00:30:52
Manufactured podcast
Manufactured
039. Manufactured x GIZ FABRIC: Kong Athit and Dr. Mark Anner on Workers and Factory Management Collaborating to Advocate a Bigger Piece of the Pie Part 1
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This is part one of our conversation with Dr. Mark Anner and Kong Athit.

Mark is a Professor, Labor and Employment Relations and Director at the Center for Global Workers’ Rights. Kong Athit. Athit started out in the fashion industry as a factory worker and is now the President of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers’ Democratic Union (CCAWDU).

During the sixth edition of GIZ FABRIC’s online seminar series Mark suggested that workers and factory management are fighting over an increasingly small piece of the pie, and that instead of fighting over their respective shares, workers and managers should be collaborating to increase the size of the piece.

In this episode, Mark shares some context. How big, exactly, is the piece of the pie we’re talking about? And what’s his dream scenario for what worker and factory management collaboration should look like?

We then turn to Kim, in her capacity as former factory manager, and Athit, in his capacity as Union leader. Is Mark’s vision crazy? And how do narratives that pit workers and managers against each other end up inadvertently hurting the cause?

Want to dig deeper ?

The FABRIC project is commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and supports the Asian textile industry in its transformation towards fair production for people and the environment.

Both Athit and Mark were panelists on the sixth edition of GIZ FABRIC’s online seminar series. Learn more about GIZ FABRIC’s online seminar series “Getting Through the Crisis Together: Asian Dialogues on Sustainability in the Textile and Garment Industry.

Check out Dr. Mark Anner’s report Abandoned (about order cancellations at the onset of the global pandemic), and his follow-up report Leveraging Desperation.

Read Dr. Mark Anner’s report on Sourcing Dynamics, Workers’ Rights, and Inequality in Garment Global Supply Chains in India Inequality; India Report.

Find out more about Jobbers Agreements.

Check out Kim’s article How Singular Narratives of Worker-Management Relations Fail Us

Check out episode 24 when we talk to Cambodian Labor Law expert Matthew Rendall on how legal context shapes worker-management relationships.

Learn more about CCAWDU.

Jessie Li

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