Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum

 

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dc.contributor.advisor Cooper, Linda en_ZA
dc.contributor.advisor Gamble, Jeanne en_ZA
dc.contributor.author Tennison, Colette en_ZA
dc.date.accessioned 2015-07-03T10:35:11Z
dc.date.available 2015-07-03T10:35:11Z
dc.date.issued 2014 en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Tennison, C. 2014. Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum. University of Cape Town. en_ZA
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11427/13379
dc.description.abstract The South African economy, as with the rest of the world economy, has been influenced by the trends of globalisation and the knowledge economy (Castells, 2001). The South African plant (large scale) baking industry is an industry undergoing significant change with the introduction of cutting edge technology and automation. The aim of this study is to examine the shifts in organisation of work in the South African plant baking industry and, in doing so, identify the corresponding shifts in knowledge, skill and identity of production supervisors. By examining how the work organisation of the bakeries has changed, as well as the adaptations of knowledge, skill and identity, the aim is to draw implications for the development of production supervisors in the future. This, combined with an analysis of the current curricula, is then drawn on to consider the possible implications for a curriculum that addresses the needs of production supervisors in the changing plant baking industry. This qualitative research made use of a case study approach. The first phase of the study examined views on shifts in the organisation of work, and the relative importance of knowledge, skill and identity, via interviews with employees of a national plant baking company that has multiple bakeries at varying stages of automation. Changes in the organisation of work and knowledge, skill and identity were then analysed through the lens of Marx’ Labour Process Theory and Barnett and Coate (2005)’s model for professional curriculum, respectively. The second phase of this study made use of documentary evidence of two different curricula currently available for the development of production supervisors; one developed by the South African Qualifications Authority and the other by the South African Chamber of Baking. This phase sought to examine their ability to address the new organisation of work identified in the first phase of the study, drawing again on the Barnett and Coate (2005) model for professional curriculum. Findings from the first phase of the study point to changes to the organisation of work as seen in the decrease in the amount of labour required to operate an increasingly automated plant and a shift in the role of the production supervisor. These changes have resulted in shifts in the relative importance of knowledge, skill and identity, according to those interviewed. The most significant of these shifts was the perceived increase in the relative importance of identity as interviewees identified the need for a strengthened occupational identity for production supervisors, and a relative devaluing of skill within the bakeries as the role of operators has shifted more towards monitoring instead of operating the machines. These findings might be explained by the increase in automation that has led both to a weakening of occupational identity and a change in the knowledge base required by production supervisors. The need for multi-skilling has increased the need for context independent knowledge. At the same time the need for the situated, tactile, knowledge of the bread making process remains. It is argued that it is this situated knowledge held by the older, more experienced production supervisors that enables the ability to solve problems on the line and potentially strengthens their occupational identity. It was found that neither of the two curricula examined addressed the current and future needs of production supervisors. The findings of both the first and second phases of the study point to the need for a new form of curriculum that addresses the needs of production supervisors who are required to function within the new organisation of work. Conclusions are that it is not possible to confer an identity through formal curriculum alone and work experience remains central to the identity of a production supervisor. Yet there remains a need to provide production supervisors with the context independent knowledge base of, and skill in, the bread making process; elements that can be addressed within a formal curriculum framework. The development of a mixed disciplinary knowledge base that consists of both situated knowledge and context independent knowledge may provide a way for the changes in knowledge, skill and identity to be accommodated in a curriculum that caters more effectively for both workers and an industry whose drive towards automation continues. en_ZA
dc.language.iso eng en_ZA
dc.subject.other Adult education en_ZA
dc.title Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum en_ZA
dc.type Master Thesis
uct.type.publication Research en_ZA
uct.type.resource Thesis en_ZA
dc.publisher.institution University of Cape Town
dc.publisher.faculty Faculty of Humanities en_ZA
dc.publisher.department School of Education en_ZA
dc.type.qualificationlevel Masters
dc.type.qualificationname MPhil en_ZA
uct.type.filetype Text
uct.type.filetype Image
dc.identifier.apacitation Tennison, C. (2014). <i>Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum</i>. (Thesis). University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,School of Education. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/11427/13379 en_ZA
dc.identifier.chicagocitation Tennison, Colette. <i>"Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum."</i> Thesis., University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,School of Education, 2014. http://hdl.handle.net/11427/13379 en_ZA
dc.identifier.vancouvercitation Tennison C. Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum. [Thesis]. University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,School of Education, 2014 [cited yyyy month dd]. Available from: http://hdl.handle.net/11427/13379 en_ZA
dc.identifier.ris TY - Thesis / Dissertation AU - Tennison, Colette AB - The South African economy, as with the rest of the world economy, has been influenced by the trends of globalisation and the knowledge economy (Castells, 2001). The South African plant (large scale) baking industry is an industry undergoing significant change with the introduction of cutting edge technology and automation. The aim of this study is to examine the shifts in organisation of work in the South African plant baking industry and, in doing so, identify the corresponding shifts in knowledge, skill and identity of production supervisors. By examining how the work organisation of the bakeries has changed, as well as the adaptations of knowledge, skill and identity, the aim is to draw implications for the development of production supervisors in the future. This, combined with an analysis of the current curricula, is then drawn on to consider the possible implications for a curriculum that addresses the needs of production supervisors in the changing plant baking industry. This qualitative research made use of a case study approach. The first phase of the study examined views on shifts in the organisation of work, and the relative importance of knowledge, skill and identity, via interviews with employees of a national plant baking company that has multiple bakeries at varying stages of automation. Changes in the organisation of work and knowledge, skill and identity were then analysed through the lens of Marx’ Labour Process Theory and Barnett and Coate (2005)’s model for professional curriculum, respectively. The second phase of this study made use of documentary evidence of two different curricula currently available for the development of production supervisors; one developed by the South African Qualifications Authority and the other by the South African Chamber of Baking. This phase sought to examine their ability to address the new organisation of work identified in the first phase of the study, drawing again on the Barnett and Coate (2005) model for professional curriculum. Findings from the first phase of the study point to changes to the organisation of work as seen in the decrease in the amount of labour required to operate an increasingly automated plant and a shift in the role of the production supervisor. These changes have resulted in shifts in the relative importance of knowledge, skill and identity, according to those interviewed. The most significant of these shifts was the perceived increase in the relative importance of identity as interviewees identified the need for a strengthened occupational identity for production supervisors, and a relative devaluing of skill within the bakeries as the role of operators has shifted more towards monitoring instead of operating the machines. These findings might be explained by the increase in automation that has led both to a weakening of occupational identity and a change in the knowledge base required by production supervisors. The need for multi-skilling has increased the need for context independent knowledge. At the same time the need for the situated, tactile, knowledge of the bread making process remains. It is argued that it is this situated knowledge held by the older, more experienced production supervisors that enables the ability to solve problems on the line and potentially strengthens their occupational identity. It was found that neither of the two curricula examined addressed the current and future needs of production supervisors. The findings of both the first and second phases of the study point to the need for a new form of curriculum that addresses the needs of production supervisors who are required to function within the new organisation of work. Conclusions are that it is not possible to confer an identity through formal curriculum alone and work experience remains central to the identity of a production supervisor. Yet there remains a need to provide production supervisors with the context independent knowledge base of, and skill in, the bread making process; elements that can be addressed within a formal curriculum framework. The development of a mixed disciplinary knowledge base that consists of both situated knowledge and context independent knowledge may provide a way for the changes in knowledge, skill and identity to be accommodated in a curriculum that caters more effectively for both workers and an industry whose drive towards automation continues. DA - 2014 DB - OpenUCT DP - University of Cape Town LK - https://open.uct.ac.za PB - University of Cape Town PY - 2014 T1 - Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum TI - Historical shifts in knowledge, skill and identity in the South African plant baking industry : implications for curriculum UR - http://hdl.handle.net/11427/13379 ER - en_ZA


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