A Critical Narrative of Employee Well-Being and Control Paradox in Higher Education

Nirupama R. Akella (Wichita State University, USA)
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 257
EISBN13: 9781799886242|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-5820-1.ch011
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The case presents a detailed snapshot of a staff employee well-being initiative developed and implemented by the Human Resources (HR) department in August 2014 at the Online Learning Unit (OLU) of J.M. College located in southwestern Georgia. The case is an auto-ethnographic account of how implementation of an employee quality of life (QOL) initiative combined with surveillance techniques resulted in a negative toxic culture of employee resentment, hostility, and poor performance. Using modern surveillance theories of synoptican, actor-network theory (ANT), and surveillance capitalism, the case shows how the original Foucauldian theory of panopticon has re-invented itself into a panopticon of technology dominated by a culture of capitalism and profit-maximization. The case uses pseudo names to protect privacy and maintain confidentiality of the institution and characters. The case accurately details events in a chronological manner focusing on the main character's thoughts and actions.
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