Regulating the Platform Economy in Italy and the UK - Dr Alessio Bertolini (Glasgow, School of Law)
From James Stewart
In the past few years, the platform economy has emerged as one of the most disrupting phenomena in the labour market, questioning older ways of organising work and of managing employment relationships. This has prompted policy actors and stakeholders to react to these challenges by starting a process of adaptation of the labour law framework to these new forms of employment. Nevertheless, this process has been far from homogenous across countries, as the existing employment-related institutional framework has contributed to shaping the strategies and responses of different policy actors and stakeholders in different ways. Using semi-structured interviews with relevant stakeholders as well as documentary analysis, this paper explores the ongoing process of adaptation in two countries, Italy and the UK, characterised by very different employment regulations frameworks, industrial relations and policy preferences. It shows how the differences in these institutional variables can explain the strikingly different response in terms of labour law adaptation for regulating platform work and they are likely to influence the unfolding reform process in the years to come.
Alessio Bertolini reently completed his PhD in Social Policy at the University of Edinburgh, with a dissertation on the experiences of precarious employment among temporary agency workers in a comparative perspective. He then joined Glasgow University on the ERC 'Work on Demand' project in September 2018. As part of the WoD project, he has been investigating proposals for labour law reforms as regards gig economy work in the UK and Italy and the role of policy ideas in the regulation of new forms of employment. Alessio has also been lecturing and tutoring in several courses in labour market policy and social policy at the University of Edinburgh.