Around the globe, the workplace is increasingly fissured and work has become ever more precarious as companies rely on subcontracting, franchising, temporary workers, and independent contractors. In some sectors, “gig” work has entirely displaced more stable forms of employment. Meanwhile, automation and algorithmic management are on the rise. This session will examine how law has contributed to these developments and how the regulation of work and the field of labor law might be reconceived in light of changes in the global economy. We will ask: To what extent are new forms of employment really new? What has been the effect of fissuring on work and what is the likely effect of automation and algorithmic management? Against this background, how are workers organizing to transform their jobs and their communities? What is the relationship between informal norms generated by workers and formal labor law? What about the relationship between collective rights at work and the functioning of democracy?
This event is a part of Columbia Academy on Law in Global Affairs (CALGA), a series of online open-access events, in which Columbia Law School faculty present their research and debate current issues with colleagues from around the globe.
Kate Andrias is a Professor of Law at Columbia Law School. She teaches and writes in the areas of labor law and constitutional law with a focus on problems of political and economic inequality.
Ruth Dukes is Professor of Labour Law at the University of Glasgow and principal investigator on the research project Work on Demand: Contracting for Work in a Changing Economy.
Guy Mundlak is a Professor at the Tel Aviv University Faculty of Law and the chair of the Department of Labour Studies. His work emphasizes the impact of law on the labour market and the welfare state. He recently published Organizing Matters: Two Logics of Trade Union Representation (2021).
Brishen Rogers is a Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. His recent work explores the relationship among labor and employment laws, workplace technological change, and economic inequality. His book Data and Democracy at Work is forthcoming from The MIT Press.