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Five things we need to know about the on-demand economy

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  • Maselli, Ilaria
  • Lenaerts, Karolien
  • Beblavý, Miroslav

Abstract

The last few years have witnessed the exponential growth of platforms like Uber and Airbnb and the creation of countless other less well-known examples. The expansion of the on-demand economy puts huge pressure on regulators to adapt it to the existing frameworks for labour and taxation. The rapid growth of the sector also divides experts: it is seen by many as threat for working conditions, and by others as an incredible opportunity. The purpose of this essay is to take a balanced perspective on what we know about the on-demand economy and what needs further investigation. More research is needed on the individual cases before one can draw conclusions on how this new sector works. The political economy of the sector is made even more interesting by the fact that the technology is developing faster than the regulation. Yet, our plea to policy-makers is to refrain from legislating too early and to take the time to understand how the supply and the demand of these services behave and their equilibrium. This CEPS Essay presents groundbreaking work on the on-demand economy, drawing on the most salient findings debated during the CEPS Winter School “From Uber to Amazon Mechanical Turk: Non-traditional labour markets driven by technological and organisational change”, 23-25 November 2015, financed by the InGRID FP7 project.

Suggested Citation

  • Maselli, Ilaria & Lenaerts, Karolien & Beblavý, Miroslav, 2016. "Five things we need to know about the on-demand economy," CEPS Papers 11209, Centre for European Policy Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:eps:cepswp:11209
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    File URL: https://www.ceps.eu/system/files/CEPS%20Essay%20No%2021%20On%20Demand%20Economy.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maselli,Ilaria & Fabo, Brian, 2015. "Digital workers by design? An example from the on-demand economy," CEPS Papers 11030, Centre for European Policy Studies.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lenaerts, Karolien & Kilhoffer, Zachary, 2017. "Government Responses to the Platform Economy: Where do we stand?," CEPS Papers 12773, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    2. De Groen, Willem Pieter & Maselli, Ilaria & Fabo, Brian, 2016. "The Digital Market for Local Services: A one-night stand for workers? An example from the on-demand economy," CEPS Papers 11438, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    3. Werner Eichhorst & Ulf Rinne, 2017. "Digital Challenges for the Welfare State," CESifo Forum, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 18(04), pages 03-08, December.
    4. Brian Fabo & Miroslav BEBLAVY & Karolien LENAERTS & Zachary KILHOFFER, 2017. "An overview of European Platforms: Scope and Business Models," JRC Research Reports JRC109190, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    5. Fabo, B., 2017. "Towards an understanding of job matching using web data," Other publications TiSEM b8b877f2-ae6a-495f-b6cc-9, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    6. Ian Sutherland & Kiattipoom Kiatkawsin, 2020. "Determinants of Guest Experience in Airbnb: A Topic Modeling Approach Using LDA," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(8), pages 1-16, April.
    7. Heiland, Heiner, 2020. "Workers' Voice in platform labour: An Overview," WSI Studies 21, The Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI), Hans Böckler Foundation.

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