Donahue, Karen A. Books
Dr. Karen A. Donahue is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of La Verne in Southern California. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of California-Santa Barbara. Dr. Donahue’s areas of expertise and interest include law and society, criminology, statistics, urban sociology, medical sociology and population and environment.2006 0-7734-5730-5
Research on the effects of technology in the workplace has resulted in what has become a still-unresolved deskilling versus upgrading controversy. Those on the upgrading side believe that the work machines do involves repetitive and simple physical movements or decisions, so automation most easily replaces already deskilled repetitious labor, resulting in an overall upgrading of worker skills. However, the hypothesis of this study is that mechanization and automation have become increasingly sophisticated and are now replacing the skilled sector of the workforce, leading to alienation and job dissatisfaction. This study also enlarges the discussion to place technological change within the context of other workplace trends, such as the ongoing process of rationalization and globalization. Although the work of medical imaging specialists is continuing to change with the introduction of increasingly sophisticated and complex technologies, such as diagnostic ultrasound, computerized tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging, the skills of the specialist are being degraded, leading to alienation among the workforce. Additionally, it was found that the medical imaging specialists are not passive objects in the workforce but are actively engaged in making their work environment less alienating.