Ph.D. project: How digital labour platforms reshape spatio-temporal patterns of work.
In my research project I focus on the social, spatial, and temporal working arrangements emerging in platform-mediated labour in Switzerland. Online Platforms like Uber or Coople match short-term jobs and workers with the help of code, algorithms, and customized applications. Matches through digitial communication allow an almost instant connection of employers, consumers, and workers.
While positive aspects of platform-mediated labour are highlighted more critical scholars point to potentially problematic effects. Working conditions and the observation that labour relations are being socially, spatially, and temporally rearticulated in ways that can put workers into disadvantaged positions are discussed. Another crucial and unresolved issue is the question of power imbalances on the platforms, where “the code” and “the algorithm” match labour demand and supply in ways that are often opaque to workers and limit their opportunities for negotiation.
In my project I aim to investigate how digital labour platforms shape low-wage work relations and what impact they have on workers’ lives. Empirically, I will proceed in two steps: First, I will do web-based research and generate an overview of the existing labour intermediation platform market in Switzerland. Second, I will do autoethnographic fieldwork as a worker mediated through a digital platform and conduct interviews with other platform workers. This will shift the focus to the workers’ perspective and will contribute to our understanding of how digital platforms reshape spatio-temporal patterns of work in Switzerland today.
2017 University of Zürich, MSc in Human and Economic Geography. Master Thesis:Diskussionen um Männlichkeit: Junge Männer in Berufen mit statistisch tiefem Männeranteil. PDF
2014 University of Bern, BSc in Sport Science and Geography
Keller, Marisol (2018): «Diskussionen um Männlichkeit: Junge Männer in Berufen mit statistisch tiefem Männeranteil» (Presentation). Panel input at the conference «Zeitdiagnose Männlichkeiten in der Schweiz» organised by the working group TransforMen, Fachhochschule St. Gallen.