The digital entertainment industries and beyond

Paul Thompson, Rachel Parker, Stephen Cox

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

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The chapter draws on research that situates development studios – games and visual effects (VFX) – in the global value chain, concerned with issues of control and value capture faced by small and medium-sized producers of digital entertainment products. In the context of the relevant industries, it shows how mainstream global value chain (GVC) perspectives are unable to deal with asymmetric power relations between capitals and between capital and labour. A preliminary model of value and power dynamics is developed that goes beyond complexity of information exchange, codifiability and competence of the supplier base (cf. Gereffi et al., 2005), in part by incorporating labour power – value inputs, agency and impacts – more fully into the framework. The chapter is, therefore, a contribution both to developing less workplace-centric versions of labour process theory and exploring it compatibility with value chain models that have a more radical intent restored.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPutting Labour in its Place
Subtitle of host publicationLabour Process Analysis and Global Value Chains
EditorsKirsty Newsome, Phil Taylor, Jennifer Bair, Al Rainnie
Place of PublicationHoundmills, Basingstoke
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Mar 2015

Publication series

NameCritical Perspectives on Work and Employment
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan


  • games and visual effects
  • VFX
  • global value chain
  • GVC
  • power relations and dynamics
  • value chain models
  • digital entertainment products

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