Gig economy

The “gig economy” refers to a trend away from traditional employment models towards the use of freelance contractors to fulfil short-term projects or “gigs”. It is becoming increasingly prevalent with the advent of technologies that allow freelancers to bid for or otherwise engage clients on a piecemeal basis. Uber, Airbnb and Upwork are all examples of disruptive technologies that are putting clients in touch with service providers in real-time online marketplaces. These pages cover the “Uberisation” of the economy and the employment status of so-called “gig workers”.

Uber to add a further 20,000 drivers in the UK

A surge in demand since lockdown rules were eased has led Uber to start recruiting more drivers, but more legal action could follow over workers' rights.

Ireland must rethink its approach to the gig economy

27 Apr 2021

Dublin's binary approach to the gig economy has created a zero-sum game for platform operators and contractors. It's time for a rethink.

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Matthew Taylor: Change tax system to stop exploitation in gig economy

26 Apr 2021

Matthew Taylor believes that aligning the systems for employment status and tax would help prevent worker exploitation.

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Addison Lee drivers are workers, Court of Appeal confirms

23 Apr 2021

Addison Lee drivers are workers, not self-employed, and are entitled to the national minimum wage and holiday pay, the Court of Appeal has confirmed.

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Just Eat serves up ‘agency worker’ model in Liverpool

21 Apr 2021

Just Eat is pressing ahead with plans to end the company’s reliance on gig workers by offering couriers the opportunity to join its ‘agency worker’ model.

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Deliveroo error sees riders paid inflated bonuses

15 Apr 2021

Deliveroo’s plans to say reward its most experienced riders with bonuses saw many riders receiving the wrong amounts.

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Deliveroo riders on strike over pay and conditions

7 Apr 2021

Around 400 Deliveroo riders are striking over pay and conditions today, amid growing pressure for it to improve working practices and rights.

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deliveroo rider

Deliveroo riders paid as little as £2ph, study alleges

26 Mar 2021

New study on riders' pay, strike action, investor criticism and Rashford talks mark bumpy run-up to Deliveroo flotation.

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Uber agrees to give drivers minimum wage and employment rights

17 Mar 2021

Following the Supreme Court ruling that its drivers are workers, Uber is giving its UK drivers a guaranteed minimum wage, holiday pay and pensions.

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Spain to be first in EU to give gig economy workers employee rights

12 Mar 2021

Platform workers to be given employee status while unions will be given the right to access algorithms used by gig firms.

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Deliveroo to pay drivers bonuses of up to £10,000

8 Mar 2021

Fast-food delivery giant Deliveroo has announced it is setting aside a £16 million ‘thank-you’ fund to reward its most loyal...

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Couriers allege facial ID software used by Uber is ‘indirectly racist’

4 Mar 2021

Uber’s facial identification software is not consistently capable of recognising the faces of darker skinned workers, drivers claim.

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European Commission to consult over future of gig economy

26 Feb 2021

The European Commission has begun its consultation on the rights of gig economy workers whose labour is governed by digital platforms.

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Uber ruling: what happens next?

23 Feb 2021

The Supreme Court's decision in the Uber v Aslam case is set to have significant implications for the app-based working model. But what comes next for Uber and its workers?

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Supreme Court: Uber drivers are workers

19 Feb 2021

Uber loses final possible appeal against employment tribunal judgment that its drivers are entitled to workers' rights.

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