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  1. #1
    Don't pet me. JAVO's Avatar
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    Default Is Germany more efficient than the USA?

    The average German worker puts in 394 hours less than an American each year -- the equivalent of nearly ten fewer weeks. The country is far smaller than the United States in area, population and resources, yet still manages to compete as the fourth largest economy and third largest exporter in the world.
    From: http://money.cnn.com/2013/07/09/news...html?hpt=hp_t3

    Is Germany more efficient than the USA like those statistics seem to indicate? What is Germany doing right? What is the USA doing wrong?

  2. #2
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAVO View Post
    From: http://money.cnn.com/2013/07/09/news...html?hpt=hp_t3

    Is Germany more efficient than the USA like those statistics seem to indicate? What is Germany doing right? What is the USA doing wrong?
    40 hour (+x) weeks are the norm here as well. Naturally not everybody has a fulltime job (this is especially problematic with women). Not sure how those 394 hours were calculated. That's over an extra hour each day that Americans supposedly work longer despite having comparable labor contracts?!?!?! There's something odd about that number.

    As for general overall efficiency and the German economy, my guess is that our recent comparably good fortune has more to do with keeping down domestic wages at the cost of a growing gap between rich and poor, focusing on export at the cost of the domestic market and smart tactics at the cost of our European neighbors when it comes to dealing with the Euro crisis.


    But keep on thinking we are ruthlessly efficient robots who can't dance for the life of them but built great machines with stunning precision. We love to hear that!
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  3. #3

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    Well its better, I dont know about efficient.

    The US is just coasting on its good old days and imagining it can live in that imagined past when its economy and society doesnt resemble that time anymore.

    Germans still have a mixed economy, mixed between government and private aswell as manufacturing, commerce, services, they arent dominated by money and a financial sector which can bully the politicians, they dont have a military industrial complex either.

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    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Well its better, I dont know about efficient.

    The US is just coasting on its good old days and imagining it can live in that imagined past when its economy and society doesnt resemble that time anymore.

    Germans still have a mixed economy, mixed between government and private aswell as manufacturing, commerce, services, they arent dominated by money and a financial sector which can bully the politicians, they dont have a military industrial complex either.

    Wish it were!

    We might not be as bad as, say, Spain when it comes to corruption, but there is a shitload of lobbying going on and our politicians are mostly lapdogs of our industry (and the US, but that's another story for another day). We are also one of the most important weapons exporters. Not militaristic anymore (thank goodness!) but working hard on supplying every dictator we can get our hands on with german tanks and guns.
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    Wish it were!

    We might not be as bad as, say, Spain when it comes to corruption, but there is a shitload of lobbying going on and our politicians are mostly lapdogs of our industry (and the US, but that's another story for another day). We are also one of the most important weapons exporters. Not militaristic anymore (thank goodness!) but working hard on supplying every dictator we can get our hands on with german tanks and guns.
    Yeah but compare Germany to the UK is on want to compare a functional to a lopsided mono-economy, finanical sector in the UK is 4% of GDP, if Germany is producing the dirty armaments of the world then it is at least not supplying people they then go on to fight, like the UK with Argentina and Iraq or US in afghanistan and elsewhere, but that could just be much better foreign policy.

    If there is corruption and lobbying its not like any place else because the politicians and political/voting constituencies still have power rather than pleading for support like so much sponsorship deals, there's proper industrial relations and trade unionism because working people are not universally despised.

  6. #6
    Riva
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    It probably has a lot to do with economic principles, transparency and proper education etc all of which Germany along with a few other nations such as Japan, Singapore (who are also economic powers universally stereotyped as efficient) have in very good condition.

    Another point I would like to make (before someone else does) is Germany is a fairy homogeneous society.

    A homogeneous society has its advantages. People from the USA might not understand what I am trying to explain here since most immigrants and people belonging to vastly different ethnicities (cultures actually) easily integrate into the US culture. (Especially the younger generations.) However this is not something experienced in most nations as minorities strongly hold on to their own cultures/religions/customs without trying much to integrate. Under these circumstances people become divided though they would co-exist without conflict. So if one takes a multicultural society without natural (a better word is influential) forms of integration people naturally over time become divided. These subtle differences influence people's decisions makings (especially that of the leaders/politicians) in ways that would take me too long to explain here. One area which is immensely damaged is the allocation of resources which will inevitably affect efficiency overtime.

    Now imagine a homogeneous society. (The best example I can give is Japan.) Will most of these issues affect the decision making of the leaders of these nations?

    The point I am trying to make between a homogeneous society, allocations of resources and efficiency might seem to far apart but these are things that I observe quite often.

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    resonance entropie's Avatar
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    What Riva said is very clever. It prolly has a effect if you have to manage a state the size of New York or a state the size of America. In my book it was already a masterpiece to unite such a big country under one flag. I mean look at Europe thats embarassing in comparison
    [URL]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEBvftJUwDw&t=0s[/URL]

  8. #8
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    There are many competing models for evaluating worker productivity, and I don't pretend to know which is the most accurate: for example, on the Wikipedia page*, the United States ranks well ahead of Germany on one model (and behind only the Netherlands as far as large and diversified economies are concerned**), and well behind Germany on another. My hunch is that our skilled labor is more productive and our unskilled labor is less productive (taking into account differences in politics, culture, regulatory systems, education and income gaps, etc.)

    * http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...er_hour_worked

    **Norway and Luxembourg have small populations and economies heavily influenced by the oil and banking sectors; I'm also assuming that 'dutch disease' is, ironically, no longer applicable to the Netherlands.

    Edit: just glanced at the Wikipedia page again, and the second model listed Greece very highly, which means we should probably be skeptical about the accuracy of any of these models, at least over the short-term.

  9. #9
    resonance entropie's Avatar
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    Thats true too, America is definitly leading in innovation. Most of our managers still think that electronics industry is just a trend and will eventually vanish into thin air.

    We definitly need a generation change, being a tiny nation with a rough language combined with the disability for rebellion is an infertile mix.
    [URL]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEBvftJUwDw&t=0s[/URL]

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAVO View Post
    Is Germany more efficient than the USA like those statistics seem to indicate? What is Germany doing right? What is the USA doing wrong?
    Meh. To say "Germany is much smaller than the US yet it's fourth in the world in GDP!" doesn't mean anything as far as 'efficiency' goes. I could just as easily say:

    US GDP = $16.2 trillion
    German GDP = $3.6 trillion

    US population = 313.9 million
    German population = 81.8 million

    US GDP per capita = $51,000
    German GDP per capita = $44,000

    Therefore the US is ~15% more 'efficient'.

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