"This paper traces the evolution of employment relations in the U.S. auto industry over the post World War II period with particular emphasis on recent developments. There is a strong movement toward growing variation in employment relations within both the assembly and parts sectors of the auto industry. Variation appears both through the spread of more contingent compensation and team systems of work organization. There is also wide variety across plants and industry segments in basic employment systems including low wage, human resource, Japanese-oriented, and joint team-based approaches. Declining unionization is a particularly strong influence in the parts sector although nonunion operations have no spread to the assembly sector. While these trends are well illustrated by developments in the auto industry, they are trends common to other parts of the U.S. economy."