Over the last two decades, the world has seen a proliferation of digital platforms and the emergence of an ecosystem of digital work. Now, with the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, not only is technological change accelerating, but it is providing additional impetus for firms and workers to move work online. This geographically untethered work is creating new opportunities for homebased platform work for women that has the potential to reduce the gaps in male and female labour force participation toward significant economic gains. Yet this will only happen if policymakers enable women to adjust to, engage with, and thrive in this digital world of work punctuated by the pandemic. Such a policy and regulatory agenda entails overcoming the digital divide; addressing women’s time poverty; ensuring that homebased platform work is visible and that the online world of work doesn’t replicate or amplify offline biases; instituting labour and welfare protections that cover homebased platform workers; creating frameworks for non-judicial redressal of grievances; and promoting digital entrepreneurship that is viable and sustainable.
Osservatorio Geoeconomia ISPI