Digital workers by design? An example from the on-demand economy

Author (Person) ,
Series Title
Series Details No.414, October 2015
Publication Date 19/10/2015
Content Type


Recent organisational and technological changes à la Uber have generated a new labour market fringe: a digital class of workers and contractors. In this paper we study the case of CoContest, a crowdsourcing platform for interior design. Our objective is to investigate how profitable this type of work can be, also from a cross-country perspective, and why professionals choose to supply work on such a platform. Given the low returns, one might expect to see a pattern of northern employer/southern contractor. Yet analysis reveals a more nuanced pattern, in which designers supply their work even if they live in Italy, which is a high-income country. For these designers work on CoContest can make sense if they are new to the labour market and face high entry barriers, although crowdsourcing does not offer them profitable employment full time. The case of Serbia, the second-largest supplier of designers, is different, however. As a result of differences in purchasing power, if the market grows experienced Serbian designers can expect to make a living from crowdsourced contracts.

Source Link
Subject Categories
Countries / Regions , ,