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World Bank report highlights lack of job security in online gig work for women and youth

The Rapid Expansion of <a href="" class="st_tag internal_tag " rel="tag" title="">Online</a> Gig Work: Key Takeaways

The Rapid Expansion of Online Gig Work: Key Takeaways

The recently published a report highlighting the rapid expansion of online gig work, particularly in developing . The report is based on surveys conducted across 17 countries and reveals some key insights into the .

Key Takeaways:

  • Online gig work has seen a significant increase, with an estimated 435 million people globally engaging in such work, a considerable jump from the previous estimate of 154 million.
  • The demand for online gig work has grown by 41% between 2016 and the first quarter of 2023.
  • Online gig work includes various tasks like tagging, data entry, website design, and software , offering flexible working options and an entry point to the labor market, particularly for those in developing nations.
  • While online gig work presents income-generating opportunities and flexibility, it also lacks adequate worker protection and poses challenges related to income stability, career trajectories, data security, and privacy.
  • gig platforms play a crucial role in regional labor markets, and the gig can promote inclusivity by offering opportunities to youth, women, and low-skilled workers.
  • However, gig workers, like many informal sector workers in developing countries, often lack the protection of labor regulations, making them vulnerable to unfair practices, exploitation, and workplace injuries.
  • The gig economy has the potential to foster digital skill development, increase income prospects, and enhance social protection coverage for informal workers.

The expansion of online gig work has significant implications for both governments and workers. On one hand, it provides income-generating opportunities and flexibility, especially for individuals in low-, informal occupations. It can also serve as a pathway for low-skilled workers to acquire essential digital skills and improve job prospects. On the other hand, the lack of worker protection, uncertain income streams, and potential for exploitation pose challenges for gig workers.

Furthermore, local gig platforms play a vital role in regional labor markets, but they face difficulties in establishing sustainable business models. Governments need to address these challenges and develop policies that protect gig workers while promoting inclusivity and skill development.

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