Citation McGuire D & Laaser K (2018) 'You have to pick': Cotton and state-organized forced labour in Uzbekistan. Economic and Industrial Democracy. https://doi.org/10.1177/0143831X18789786
Abstract This article explores state-organized forced labour in Uzbekistan’s cotton industry, the labour management practices applied in the sector and the experience of labour exploitation associated with Uzbek cotton. To theorise this, we bring together Crane’s (2013) slavery as a management practice theory with Sen’s (1999) capabilities approach, offering an alternative to theories focusing on lead firm-supplier relations or Global Value Chains when investigating violations of working conditions. Based on analysis of monitoring data and reporting on Uzbekistan’s cotton sector, we explore the characteristics and capabilities enabling forced labour and as well as the exploitation and insulation of human capabilities that follows.