News Room

The Gig Economy and Employment Relations

Speaker: Alex Wood (Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford).

Thursday 30 November 6pm
Lecture Theatre G33, Ground Floor
Manchester Metropolitan University Business School
All Saints, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6BH


Recent media coverage of the so-called ‘gig economy’ (with companies such as Uber and Deliveroo) has exposed the shocking extent to which employers exploit vulnerable workers by adopting techniques such as wrongly classifying their employment status, employing them on zero hours contracts, and attaching them to online platforms that enable clients to access labour power potentially from anywhere in the world.


This presentation will explore what the growth of the gig economy means for employment relations by drawing on 180 worker interviews across eight countries, observation of a dozen worker events in the United States and the Philippines, and a survey of 683 Sub-Saharan and Southeast Asian workers. The findings will focus on the shared injustices, identity, solidarity, collective organisation and repertoires of action displayed by remote gig workers. The presentation will place these findings in historical context, highlighting the practical implications for worker organisation in the 21st century and the conceptual consequences for employment relations as a field of study.      


Manchester Industrial Relations Society website:

Twitter: @ManchesterIRS

29th November 2017