Technology, Employment and Wellbeing

2024/ Issue 1

New Directions

In our first issue of the Technology, Employment and Wellbeing blog, we would like to present several thought-provoking posts that look on distinct areas of digitalization of work.

In recent years, most of the policy debates have been focusing on negative effects of digitalization on work organization and worker’s wellbeing raising ethical concerns on the way new technologies are used and misused in a workplace in the first place. There is no doubt, that the datafication and ‘platformisation’ of social processes leads to the transformative implications for labour relations and job quality. However, in understanding the causes and consequences of the fragmentation of labour markets, it is important to critically examine and engage in new ways of bridging the gap between academic research, policy and practice.

In the first article of this issue, Dr. Niels van Doorn zooms in on this new form of work by looking beyond the debate of exploitative bogus-self-employment and the black box of algorithmic management. In particular, the authors highlight the underlying asymmetries of the digital economy in Europe and the need to expand research as well policy focus in the process of regulating emerging sectors of gig work that increasingly becomes migrant work.

In continuing discussion on migrant workers, Dr. Kostas Maronitis looks at the interlinkage between automation and migration policies that on the one hand expressed with a political backlash against immigration and fear of low productivity on the other hand.

Dr. Cecilia Rikap focuses on the emergence of  intellectual monopolies, as the Big Tech corporations develop and transform knowledge within the society by subordinating AI start-up infrastructures through the cloud services.

However, within the multi-billion-dollar industry, thousands of ‘ghost’ workers are training AI algorithms. The researchers from Fairwork closely examine  the working conditions in the supply chains of AI and whether change is possible for data workers.

Finally, Benjamin Ferschli assesses the limits of a universal basic income as progressive social policy arguing that the implementation of a universal basic income can potentially lead towards exclusionary and polarising effects.

picture alliance / ASSOCIATED PRESS | Eraldo Peres
26.02.2024 | Issue 01, Blog

Toward a “platform-adjacent” approach to the gig economy

by Dr. Niels van Doorn, Associate Professor of New Media and Digital Culture, University of Amsterdam


26.02.2024 | Issue 01, Blog

Immigration, Automation & Discipline of Labour

by Dr. Kostas Maronitis, Senior Lecturer, Leeds Trinity University.


26.02.2024 | Issue 01, Blog

Intellectual monopolization on steroids: Big Tech in the AI age

by Dr. Cecilia Rikap, Associate Professor in Economics, University College London.


26.02.2024 | Issue 01, Blog

The Unmagical World of AI: Workers at the bottom of the AI supply chain

by Dr Funda Ustek Spilda, Dr Lola Brittain, Dr Callum Cant and Dr Mark Graham, University of Oxford


picture alliance/AP Photo | Natacha Pisarenko
26.02.2024 | Issue 01, Blog

The Limits of a Universal Basic Income as Progressive Social Policy

by Benjamin Ferschli, DPhil researcher, University of Oxford



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Technology, Employment and Wellbeing is a new FES blog that offers original insights on the ways new technologies impact the world of work.

The blog focuses on bringing different views from tech practitioners, academic researchers, trade union representatives and policy makers.

Contact person

Dr. Inga Sabanova
Policy Officer


Future of Work

Cours Saint Michel 30a
1040 Brussels