The demand for online services has reached record levels in most countries. Delivery drivers dominate the street scene in many places.
The pandemic has increased demand even further and platforms have expanded their operations.
Meanwhile, many workers who have lost their formal jobs are trying to make a living in the platform-based transport sector.
They find themselves in bogus self-employment, however, and working in poor conditions. The platforms, which act as the actual customer, do not assume any responsibility and have yet to be legally obliged to provide protection for workers.
Collective protests are taking place and new types of grassroots organisations are emerging (Argentina, Netherlands/Belgium, Indonesia).
They are fighting for recognition, better regulation and protection, either on their own or through cooperation with traditional unions. Unions are expanding their repertoire of actions and, potentially, their membership base through these alliances.
This new form of cooperation, which bridges the gap between the formal and informal economy and targets representation of the interests of informal, self-employed or precariously employed workers, holds out tremendous innovative potential (South Korea, Uganda) and has already achieved regulatory successes.
If you don't have time to read all the publications but still want to find out about the keyresults, we recommend the Short Stories Booklet: in it you will find the essence of the results presented in short articles.
¿No tienes tiempo para leer todo el estudio? Ahorra tiempo y mantente informado con este resumen. Pas le temps de lire toute l'étude? Prenez ensuite le temps de lire le résumé. Não há tempo para ler todos os estudos? Então, reserve um tempo para ler a versão curta.
The "Trade Unions in Transformation 4.0" project was initiated by FES with the aim of better understanding the representation of workers' interests in digital capitalism. The project sheds light on how trade unions and new organisations of workers are mobilising their power resources to face and shape the emerging new world of work. FES wants to contribute to the strategy-building among workers and trade unions and is offering its cooperation.
The project highlights how workers and unions are shaping change in the industrial sectors, how tech workers are becoming part of the workers' movement, how transport workers are opposing the restructuring of their sector through platforms, and what digital tools and apps unions are developing to expand their power in the digital economy. You can find the whole project here.