Report Part I: Unionising the Chennai mobile phone industry

This article is the first of three examining working conditions in the mobile phone industry in Chennai. The material is based on a project report which was submitted to the MakeITFair project1 as part of a larger project to examine labour relations in the global electronics industry.

For the report about 20 interviews with company representatives and various civil society respondents including activists, union workers, lawyers and others with insights into the issues. Management representatives from the examined companies Nokia, Foxconn, Salcomp and Flextronics were also interviewed by the researcher in March 2011 as part of a team visiting the factories. The interviews which were carried out at the company facilities in Sriperumbudur on the outskirts of Chennai also included factory visits to all the companies apart from Foxconn. Where possible the examination of a number of documents, mainly collected from workers, adds to the evidence.

1 See project website for further details: http://www,

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Patrik is an Assistant Professor at the Azim Premji University in Bangalore and works on researched related to political economy of industrialization and economic development in India as seen from below.


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  1. Pingback: Three part series on labour issues in the mobile phone industry in Chennai, south India

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