Workshop on the Social Impacts of Robotics
of using some of its own labor or equipment, or it could substitute more equip-
to replace labor.
The inter-connectedness of these six elements emphasizes
traced around the entire network to ensure that all adaptive adjustments have been made which are necessary to reintegrate the system. This also means that an observed change in one of the links need not have been engendered in that link, hut rather have resulted as an adjustment to a change induced else-
where in this system.
n O u t p u t M o n - h o u r s
Fig. 2 The network of productivity relationships among direct input factors .
For example, mechanizing some manual operations would first affect the
ratio of actively-utilized fixed investment to man-hours.
This would tend
reduce man-hours per vestment might alter
unit of output, while the attendant increase in fixed
scrap rates, output.
it would also decrease the materials input volume per unit of
Because management’s primary motivation in altering productivity relation- ships is usually to improve its cost competitiveness, it is necessary to evaluate
on the cost
the productivity network by tracing resulting This involves, first, tracing the interaction
in each changes
unit input requirement
with its example,
factor price to calculate a 10 per cent increase in
per man-hour would yield only a 5 per cent reduction in unit wage cost, if it
effects of of course,
resulting changes in various unit costs on total unit costs on their respective proportions of total costs, as shown in
depend, Fig. 3.