NAVER LABS Europe seminars are open to the public. This seminar is virtual and requires registration.
Date: 4th March 2021, 04:00 pm (GMT +01.00)
How platform design impacts work in the gig-economy
Speaker: Benjamin V. Hanrahan is an Assistant Professor at the College of Information Sciences and Technologies at Penn State. His research interests are in how information and user interfaces structure and influence user agency. This research has spanned various contexts, particularly how email conversations impact users’ agency over their attention, how employer-employee relationships are mediated digital platforms, how communities can be strengthened by encouraging simple activities, and how interfaces can better structure algorithmically supported interactions.
Abstract: The manner in which platforms like Amazon Mechanical Turk and Uber structure capabilities, information, and visibility impacts workers in a concrete way. In the case of the gig-economy, much of the functionality is designed to make oversight and management more scalable. As the effort involved in managing individual workers decreases, the encoded management-acts in the design become increasingly inflexible as a necessary condition. In this talk, I will discuss how different design choices have impacted workers, how the platforms have evolved to exert more control, and individual cases where workers have appropriated technology to realize more flexibility in their work.