What are the distinctive traits that characterize work(ing) through (and for) a digital platform? In the burgeoning debate on the ‘gig economy’, a critical examination that comprehensively addresses this issue beyond specific examples or case studies is currently missing. This article uses labour process theory – an important Marxist approach in the study of relations of production in industrial capitalism – to address this gap. Supported by empirical illustrations from existing research, the article discusses the notions of ‘point of production’, emotional labour and control in the gig economy to argue that labour process theory offers a unique set of tools to expand our understanding of the way in which labour power comes to be transformed into a commodity in a context where the encounter between supply and demand of work is mediated by a digital platform, and where feedback, ranking and rating systems serve purposes of managerialization and monitoring of workers.

Labour process theory and the gig economy / A. Gandini. - In: HUMAN RELATIONS. - ISSN 0018-7267. - (2018). [Epub ahead of print] [10.1177/0018726718790002]

Labour process theory and the gig economy

A. Gandini
2018

Abstract

What are the distinctive traits that characterize work(ing) through (and for) a digital platform? In the burgeoning debate on the ‘gig economy’, a critical examination that comprehensively addresses this issue beyond specific examples or case studies is currently missing. This article uses labour process theory – an important Marxist approach in the study of relations of production in industrial capitalism – to address this gap. Supported by empirical illustrations from existing research, the article discusses the notions of ‘point of production’, emotional labour and control in the gig economy to argue that labour process theory offers a unique set of tools to expand our understanding of the way in which labour power comes to be transformed into a commodity in a context where the encounter between supply and demand of work is mediated by a digital platform, and where feedback, ranking and rating systems serve purposes of managerialization and monitoring of workers.
control; digital labour; emotional labour; gig work; platforms; Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous); Social Sciences (all); Strategy and Management1409 Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management; Management of Technology and Innovation
Settore SPS/08 - Sociologia dei Processi Culturali e Comunicativi
Settore SPS/09 - Sociologia dei Processi economici e del Lavoro
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/619116
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