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Labour rights in the gig economy


The ‘gig economy’. Platform-working. On-demand apps and algorithmic monitoring. Outside of some policy, technology and academic circles these terms will draw blank looks from most people. Yet ask people if they have heard of Uber, Deliveroo or TaskRabbit and the recognition will be far greater. They might use the apps. They might even work for them.

Over a very short period these terms, companies and the issues associated with them – as well as the concerns generated by them – have increasingly come to dominate debates about the nature of work in the modern economy. The public and policymakers alike will agree that work for many people in twenty-first century advanced capitalist economies is changing – and changing fast. Read on...

Young workers know they're being ripped off - and that unions are the answer

Last weeks global food strikes show young workers get what trade unionism is about - and bringing are new forms of digital organisation into play.

NEW PODCASTS: The future of trade unions – masterclass series

Revitalising trade unions depends on new ideas and learning from what works. A new series of podcasts co-produced with Unions 21 presents new insights on key issues facing unions.

Unions in the 21st century: adapt to survive, co-opt to grow

Could a clever campaign make support for unions an integral part of corporate social responsibility?

Three lessons the labour movement must learn from the Fight for 15 at Walmart

Social media, the power of reputational damage, and effective communications are powerful tools for trade union organising.

A call for the revival of political and economic education

Political and economic education is pitiful, and via political parties, the education system and trade unions, it desperately needs to be revived.

Embracing data is key to the future of unions

Learning to read and predict our changing environment through strategic use of data is crucial for the survival of trade unions.

The working lives of the under-30s show the future of work for us all

New research by the Trades Union Congress to understand the lives of Britain’s young workers will help improve work and give them a path to union membership.

Back to the future: women’s work and the gig economy

Learning from the history of women’s work can help to overcome discrimination and improve working conditions in the gig economy.

Falling through the gaps: insecure work and the social safety net

Labour market support systems need to adapt to the growing number of workers in vulnerable employment.

New unions, old laws: why flexibility is key in the ‘gig economy’

The UK already has court-tested law to better protect people working in the gig economy, but a movement is needed to effectively challenge the big app-based employers.

Organising against the gig economy: lessons from Latin America?

New strategies of organisation and workers’ control in Latin America suggest ways to tackle the insecurity of the gig economy. Español

The changing world of work and the trade union movement’s response

The economy and employment are changing fast, but there are important steps that UK unions can take to be prepared.

Organising freelancers in the platform economy: part two

Adopting online freelancing platforms as part of a business model presents organisations with challenges that require novel solutions.

It’s time to regulate the gig economy

Technology is used to monitor workers doing platform-based work. It can also be used to regulate work and protect workers.

Organising freelancers in the platform economy: part one

To understand the future of work we need to explore the diversity of platforms and how they are used in the modern economy.

Trade unions, the internet, and surviving the gig economy

The internet provides new opportunities to strengthen collective action and improve new forms of work.

It’s not the gig economy, stupid.

The gig economy has got us talking about the labour market, but the decline in trade union membership matters more.

A crisis of control: what should the on-demand workforce be demanding?

To improve security at work we must bring together the demands of people in work with those looking to find work.

Same as it ever was? Labour rights and worker organisation in the modern economy

New jobs, old problems. How can labour protect itself from the cloud?

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