IDinsight, with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has started a five-year initiative to study the digital economy and its welfare implications on gig workers using platforms that provide location-based services in three countries, India, Kenya, and Indonesia.
The exponential growth of digital economies in low and middle-income countries (LMICs) presents a promising opportunity for employment, development, and empowerment that benefits those in poverty. However, there is a clear lack of rigorous quantitative evidence on the extent to which low-income communities participate in digital platforms, the causal welfare impacts of platform expansion on low-income workers, and the effectiveness of targeted innovations to make digital platforms more inclusive, especially in LMICs.
Producing reliable evidence is urgent and critical for informing broader policy discussions. Such evidence is vital for regulators, policymakers, and philanthropic organizations, to help decision-makers navigate the complexity of the rapidly expanding digital economies in LMICs and to create evidence-based policies and programs that maximize the benefits for low-income communities.
The Digital Economy Research Impact Initiative aims to contribute to improving the welfare and well-being of gig workers from low-income communities by –
The initiative has three key phases:
IDinsight conducted an in-depth literature review on platform gig work. During this time, we also reached out to key private and public sector players, academics, and researchers in the field to deepen our understanding of the gig economy space and explore areas of collaboration in the three regions.
Digital labor gig economy from the worker’s perspective
Digital gig work and financial inclusion: Examination of links, promises, and early evidence
For more information, please contact Sudhanshu Sharma at firstname.lastname@example.org or Meg Battle at email@example.com.
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