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By Chris Brewster, Wolfgang Mayrhofer, Michael Morley

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Closer to our sphere of interest, Kerr et al. (1960) believed not only that the convergence of systems of IR was inevitable, but that the convergence would be toward US practices. Kerr et al. argued that there was a logic to industrialism which would lead to greater convergence, with, in particular, technological and economic forces bringing about greater similarities in systems. They argued that management systems represented attempts to manage technology as efficiently as possible. As the United States of America was the technological leader, it followed that US management practices represented current best practice, which other nations would eventually seek to emulate as they sought to adopt US technology.

Ireland also has a relatively young population but, as in other EU member states, the number of children is falling due to a somewhat declining birth rate. However, the birth rate remains above the EU average. 1 All statistics from Annual Eurostat Yearbooks published by the Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, Luxemburg. Most data for this chapter from Eurostat Yearbook 2002: The Statistical Guide to Europe Data 1990–2000, 1987–1997. Brussels: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.

And Scott, W. (1983) Organizational Environments: Ritual and Reality, Beverly Hills, CA: Sage. Miles, R and Snow, C. (1978) Organizational Strategy, Structure and Process, New York: McGraw Hill. Mintzberg, H. (1978) Patterns in strategy formation. Management Science, 24(9): 934–948. Monks, K. (1996) Ploughing the Furrow and Reaping the Harvest: Roles and Relationships in HRM. The 1996 Examiner/University College Cork Lecture in Human Resource Management, September, University College Cork. Monks, K.

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