ABSTRACT

Call centers have become one of the most visible and recognized symbols of information technology service off shoring. They are also the cornerstone of the broader business process outsourcing (BPO) and business process management (BPM) industries to which India’s success as a hub for outsourced and off shored IT employment is attributed. In 2002-2003, call centers represented a majority of export-oriented FDI projects in services (UNCTAD 2004). Call centers also refl ect a pivotal step in the humanorganization interface, one that has gradually evolved over the past thirty years. Governments, political parties, charities, and corporations from a number of industries have turned to these operations as a cost-eff ective means of interacting with citizens, potential supporters, donors, clients, and customers. Even unions are experimenting with call centers in their attempts at improving their responsiveness to members’ needs (Early 2011). Initially utilized by airlines and fi nancial institutions, the use of call centers has expanded vigorously to become a fi xture for complex organizations in Canada. For economies situated in the Global North and the Global South, utilizing call centers has been recognized as an eff ective strategy to build a competitive and reliable information technology infrastructure, foster regional and national economic growth, and allow local fi rms and workers to integrate into the global division of knowledge labor.