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Silicon Valley problem: Gig Economy

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Literature Review: Gig Economy problem for Silicon Valley

This “Ten Problems for Silicon Valley in the 2020s” booklet identifies ten relevant areas from very recent contributions put forward at academic level in the form journal articles, conference proceedings and students’ theses. Ten freely accessible internet references have been selected for each area and direct links are provided at the end of each chapter for own consultation. Our selected references do not intend to mirror ranking indexes nor establish novel classifications. On the contrary, they are meant to represent peer-reviewed, diverse and scientifically-sound case studies for vertical dissemination aimed at non-specialist readers. They will also be able to scoop even more references through the bibliography that is reported at the end of each selected reference.

Without further ado, these are the ten problems that we are going to introduce in this booklet:

  1. solutionism,
  2. monopolies,
  3. diversity,
  4. outsiders,
  5. gig economy,
  6. misuse,
  7. narrowness,
  8. obsolescence,
  9. manipulation,
  10. public mood.

Each problem has its own dedicated chapter made of an introductory section, a short presentation of the ten selected references and a conclusions section.

The final chapter of this booklet will report the conclusions from each chapter again in order to provide a complete executive summary.


5 Gig Economy

THE PROBLEM — The traditional information technology industry is looking to new multi-project delivery platforms and gig economy. Platforms are seen as entrepreneurial incubators, digital cages, accelerants of precarity, and chameleons adapting to their environments. Platform-enabled, on-demand gig economy provides a supplement to income at the cost of extreme flexibility.

CASE STUDIES — … buy this booklet from Amazon …

CONCLUSIONS — Data from several hundred gig economy–staffed IT projects shows that such projects are approximately 30% more productive. Platforms represent a distinct type of governance mechanism, different from markets, hierarchies, or networks, and therefore pose a unique set of problems. The introduction of the gig economy creates opportunities for would-be entrepreneurs to supplement their income in downside states of the world. App-governed gig workers function as pivotal conduits in software systems that produce digital data as a particular asset class. Workers in precarious conditions who seek employment via digital platforms are highly vulnerable to coercion and control via forms of algorithmic manipulation. Tracking apps threaten to infringe on a plethora of human rights, such as privacy. In the case of sharing economy, the needs are common between parties, whereas in the case of gig economy the needs are complimentary between parties. As restructuring proceeds, a much more advanced digitalization heightens the concentration of capital worldwide, worsens social inequality and aggravates international tensions. Women have been dropping out of the formal workforce in India, despite rapid economic growth and more flexibility. Remote workers in Africa manage various constraints on one of the world’s biggest gig economy platforms through their diverse everyday resilience, reworking and resistance practices.

TEN FREE REFERENCES FROM THE INTERNET — … buy this booklet from Amazon …


Silicon Valley Problems
“Ten Problems for Silicon Valley in the 2020s” booklet for Amazon Kindle, 2020; click on the cover to go to the dedicated Amazon listing page

By TenProblems

Literature Reviews for Inquisitive Minds