The School of Geography and the Environment (SoGE) has become a supporter of the Fairwork pledge, to help transform the global gig economy for the better.

Platform/gig work provides essential income and opportunities to many. However, a lack of protection from employment law or collective bodies, means that many platform workers face unfair and dangerous working conditions.

The Fairwork Project scores best and worse practices in the gig economy to help organisations make informed decisions about the right platforms to select for their activities.

Fairwork highlights five principles to be upheld by credible gig economy platforms:

  • Fair pay - Workers, irrespective of their employment classification, should earn a decent income. They should be paid on time, and for all work completed.
  • Fair conditions - Workers should be protected from risks arising from the processes of work. Platforms should take proactive measures to protect and promote the health and safety of workers.
  • Fair contracts - Terms and conditions should be transparent, concise, and always accessible to workers. Contracts should be consistent with the terms of workers’ engagement on the platform.
  • Fair management - There should be a documented due process for decisions affecting workers. Management processes should be transparent and result in equitable outcomes for workers.
  • Fair representation - Platforms should provide a documented process through which worker voice can be expressed. Workers have the right to organise in collective bodies, and platforms should be prepared to cooperate and negotiate with them.

SoGE hopes to encourage other organisations to help make the gig economy a fairer and safer place to work by joining the Fairwork pledge.

Professor Gillian Rose, Head of the School of Geography and the Environment, said:

"The University of Oxford’s School of Geography and the Environment is proud to support the Fairwork pledge. Many of our colleagues, through their own academic work, are acutely aware of the negative societal impacts that some gig economy platforms can create. By promoting Fairwork resources to our staff we can help them to make informed and socially responsible decisions when using or engaging with digital labour platforms."

Further information