Gig Economies Living Lab: Bridging Global Divides in Research

Digital Policy Hub Working Paper

February 22, 2024

In an ever-growing digital economy that is constantly changing the nature of work and transforming societies, the “gig” economy has emerged to connect workers and consumers through mobile and digital platforms. Research on gig work in the Global South is limited, and existing research primarily focuses on gig work in the context of the Global North. There is a growing need for a collaborative approach to gather, analyze and design innovative practices and solutions. This paper presents the proposition for a gig economies living lab model that potentially serves as a hub and space for multi-stakeholder research, data gathering, cooperation, engagement and innovation. In the case of researching the digitalization of the global economy, specifically gig economies, a living lab serves as a feasible model for adopting a worker-centred, intersectional and transnational research approach.

About the Author

Laila Mourad is a Digital Policy Hub doctoral fellow and a Ph.D. candidate at York University who adopts an interdisciplinary approach to the international development, political economy, and gender studies fields. Currently, she is exploring how home-based labour in the “gig” economy can inform and shape our understanding of the evolving notion of “work” in the digital economy.