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Photo: Shutterstock: bbernard

Cooperative work platforms: a well-functioning way of organizing work in the gig economy?

Research project
Active research
Project size
3,9 million SEK
Project owner
Department of Business Administration, School of Business, Economics and Law

Short description

Gig work has received a lot of attention due to the risks for those who "gig". The individuals themselves must take full responsibility for the risk of lack of work, for skills development and work environment as well as social and economic security. As gig work increases, new forms of organizing the work have emerged, with the ambition of reducing uncertainty and strengthening stability and security. Work platforms play an important role as they connect employers and employees. The platforms have often relinquished responsibility for the safety of the workers at the same time as they control the work in a negative way. Initiatives are emerging with the goal of creating cooperative platforms that are controlled by the workers themselves. This project studies such platforms to find out how they can reduce the disadvantages of gig work.

Purpose of project

This project will study cooperative work-platforms in order to further our knowledge of if, and if so how they can reduce precarity and create stability and empowerment for gig-workers.

Research questions

  • Under what conditions can cooperative work-platforms create stability and empowerment for affiliated workers?
  • In what ways do cooperative work-platforms foster both engagement and commercial success, which allow them to become established and grow?
  • What type of technical functionalities and affordances of cooperative work-platforms foster engagement and create stability for affiliated workers?

Case studies

The researchers will conduct case studies of three cooperative work platforms. They will use methods such as interviews, shadowing and observations. They will also study national and international networks that help the platforms to stabilize and grow.


Maria Norbäck, associate professor, Department of Business Administration

Bertil Rolandsson, associate professor, Department of Sociology and Work Science

Lars Walter, professor, University West