A paper on the Fairwork project was one of three papers shortlisted for the best paper award at the German Internet Institute (the Weizenbaum Institute’s) annual conference – held in May 2019 in Berlin, Germany. This paper, was authored by Mark Graham, Richard Heeks, Jamie Woodcock, Sandy Fredman, Darcy du Toit, Jean-Paul van Belle, Paul Mungai and Abigail Osiki. You can download it at the link below:
Graham, M, Woodcock, J., Heeks, R., Fredman, S., du Toit, D., van Belle, J-P., Mungai, P., Osiki, A. 2019. The Fairwork Foundation: Strategies for Improving Platform Work. In Proceedings of the Weizenbaum Conference 2019 “Challenges of Digital Inequality – Digital Education, Digital Work, Digital Life” (pp. 1-8). Berlin https://doi.org/10.34669/wi.cp/2.13
The paper introduces the Fairwork Foundation, a research initiative that is also developing an intervention around the quality of work on digital labour platforms. Lacking the ability to collectively bargain, many of these workers have little ability to negotiate wages or working conditions with their employers who are often on the other side of the world. As a result of this new global market for work, many workers have jobs characterized by long and irregular hours, low income, and high stress. cross India and South Africa, there are challenges for workers across a range of issues, including: pay, conditions, contracts, management, and representation. The results of the fieldwork are being used to rank and compare platforms as well as develop a set of binding legal standards for these precarious workers.