SUBMIT BY: NOVEMBER 25TH, 2019
The recent rise of the platform economy (infused by ‘crowd work’ and ‘on demand’ work) has led to new forms of work and labour markets, emerging business models, and structural economic shifts. East and Southeast Europe, as some of the largest European pools of digital platform workers, have a strong interest to exploit the potential of digitalization in the global economy.
The Reshaping Work Conference East and Southeast European (ESE) Edition, to be hosted by the Public Policy Research Center from Serbia, aims to facilitate regional discussions and push forward in anticipating impacts of the platform economy on workers, businesses, and societies in ESE. The conference seeks to discuss current trends and debates in the region, and understand how the platform economy in its different appearances unfolds, for instance, in terms of added value creation, and strategies to prevent brain drain.
While disciplines such as management, economics, politics, and communications have developed extensive bodies of literatures on platform economy they are still predominantly studied as a global phenomenon. However, in the next step, it is necessary to enrich those perspectives by analysing local, national and regional contexts, including geographically specific characteristics and implications of platform economy and work.
Therefore, we invite the submission of high quality and timely research contributions from different backgrounds, grouped together as economics, business & technology, sociology, and law & public policy that primarily focus on regional perspectives. However, submissions may take into consideration wider outlook to comparative EU and/or global perspectives. We welcome contributions from academics, independent researchers, non-profits, social activists, policy-makers, institutional representatives, businesses, start-ups, unions, platform companies, and platform workers and other stakeholders that address relevant topics this conference focuses on.
 East and Southeast European Edition will focus on the following countries: Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Hungary, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Ukraine, Belarus, yet the contributions discussing the impact of the platform economy in other countries from this broadly defined region(s) are not excluded from consideration”.
Platform economy plays an important role throughout the economy by minimizing transactions costs between entities that can benefit from getting together. In these businesses, pricing and other strategies are strongly affected by the indirect network effects between the two sides of the platform. Digital platforms are efficient and effective technological infrastructures for matching demand and supply, which are increasingly used by firms to access human capital, allowing more varied and flexible types of work for job seekers. Digital platforms affect productivity, flexibility, and interconnectivity in the economy. They change the nature of employment, their trends and characteristics. We invite contributions from the fields of economics that may examine, among others, the following aspects:
Digital platforms promise to create opportunities and enable new business models. Platforms have the potential to allow for more varied and flexible types of work organization both for large enterprises, startups and individual entrepreneurs. Meanwhile, the platform economy brings about newly configured relationalities and responsibilities (e.g., platform companies vs. supply chain firms, gig workers vs. regular work force, etc.). Accordingly, new and ever more complex managerial and policy challenges arise, concerning work routines, distributed value creation, knowledge flows, supply chains, human resource management, corporate governance, accountability, etc. Entrepreneurs, workers, investors and also researchers become connected in new ways, at local, national, regional, and global scales. It is an unresolved question how workers, businesses, governments, consumers, intermediaries, and the environment in East and Southeast Europe will be affected by these transformations. We invite contributions exploring this question, especially from management, information systems, entrepreneurship, innovation studies and economic geography. Contributions may examine the following aspects:
Digital platforms and online marketplaces for goods and services operate across a wide variety of labour markets and socio-economic contexts. As current trends show, the participation of workers, users and prosumers from the region of ESE (particularly from Ukraine, Serbia, Hungary and Romania) to global digital platforms is significant, yet the analysis of different aspects of their position, mechanisms of inclusion, identities, their social and human capitals in relation to platform work is widely neglected. The focus of this call is on features and agency of those working and living within digital platforms, under the key hypothesis that in digital age connectivity makes the distinction between work and activity even more uncertain.
We invite contributions from the field of social sciences that address, among others, the following topics focused on the regional including comparative perspectives:
Legal and policy solutions for new forms of work stemming from platform economy, such as the “crowdwork” and “on demand work” are in the infancy stage in almost all the countries in the region. Yet the importance of these solutions is significant for nurturing platform economy and providing for regulated work conditions for platform workers. Thus, in the field of law and public policy we welcome papers that explore possible approaches to the regulation of platform work, including soft law, local or regional pilots, the ‘right to challenge’, and self-regulation. We also welcome papers that would address the international regulation of platform work, including the data transparency regulations. Papers that reflect empirical legal studies linked to one of the suggested topics are most welcome.
Those wishing to participate in the conference by presenting a research paper/report are requested to submit an extended abstract (around 800 words) by NOVEMBER 25th. Applicants should include their title, institutional affiliation, and indicate the division to which their work belongs (economics, business & technology, sociology & or law & public policy).
Abstracts should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also contact Branka Andjelkovic, Head of the Committee at email@example.com with any questions you may have about scholarly contributions to this conference. Notification of acceptance will be sent by December 9th.
The Reshaping Work Conference East and Southeast European Edition will take place on February 27th & 28th, 2020 at University of Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia. For practical information, please consult our website: novisad.reshapingwork.net. Early-bird tickets go on sale on November 15th. To ensure you stay up-to-date, please sign up for our newsletter or follow us on Facebook & Twitter.
Head of the Scientific Committee
Public Policy Research Center
DIVISION: Law and Public Policy
Department of Labour Law and Law of Social Security, University of Vienna
DIVISION: Law and Public Policy
International Labour Organization, Geneva
Pantheon Sorbonne University/ Institute of Labour Economics (IZA)
Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford
Department of Social and Political Sciences, University of Milan
DIVISION: Business & Technology
Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society/Oxford Internet Institute
DIVISION: Business & Technology
Faculty of Technical Sciences, University of Novi Sad