Online and offline livelihoods: An analysis of the Gig economy  

Date: 23-09-2021

The Center for Information Technology and Public Policy (CITAPP),

International Institute of Information Technology Bangalore (IIITB)

invites you to a Webinar titled

Online and offline livelihoods:
An analysis of the Gig economy

15:30 hours – 17:00 hours IST, 23rd September 2021 (Thursday)

Webinar schedule and registration details:

About the Webinar:

Digital platforms are disrupting traditional businesses, in areas such as education, e-commerce, healthcare, hospitality, and transport, and witnessing rapid growth. These platforms have brought about changes in the services sector by introducing on demand services for consumers and on demand employment for workers using “work on-demand via apps” including “activities such as transport, cleaning and running errands” and “forms of clerical work …channelled through apps managed by firms” (also called “Gig Work”). Studies and news reports of the conditions and concerns of worker welfare thus far cover only a segment of the spectrum of app-based on-demand gig employment. Extant literature on platform work in India has thus far focused on the labour practices around ridesharing services. Mainstream news media’s reportage on the gig economy are also largely confined to the challenges that rideshare and food delivery workers.

In our study, funded by the Azim Premji University, we conducted exhaustive interviews of employees in both house-maintenance and beauty services, in two cities. We created a base line group of workers employed with offline employers for comparison with our treatment group consisting of workers employed through online Gig platforms.

To reinforce and augment the findings of our research, we have invited experts in this field to deliberate on the following aspects related to online versus offline employment of Gig workers:

Wage differentials

Differentials in social security benefits, health and work-related insurance

Differentials in conditions of workers with respect dignity of labour, flexible work hours, exploitation of the vulnerable, safety and security of workers

Differentials in opportunities, bargaining power of workers, and worker welfare

Impact of recent amendments to labour law on the Gig employment


Project PIs Balaji Parthasarathy, Preeti Mudliar and V.Sridhar, IIITB

Saurabh Thukral, NITI Aayog

TK Arun, Economic Times

Abhishek Sekharan, Centre for Internet and Society

CITAPP at IIIT Bangalore is an interdisciplinary think-tank set-up to focus on the policy challenges and the organizational demands made by technological innovation. Of particular interest to the Centre is how technological advances, along with institutional changes that harness the legitimacy and the powers of bureaucracies and market, address the needs of underserved communities.