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Julian Nelson
Julian Nelson

Platform Ruralism - Digital Platforms And The T...

In this pilot study, we challenge the normative perspective of the urban in understanding the platform economy and advance conceptual discussions of rurality to ask: What is distinct about platform ruralism and how do (Swedish) rural digital practices and spaces illustrate this? We aim to map and understand the relationship between digital platforms, rural digital practices and changing rural social and economic life based on reviewing existing literature across relevant themes. The Swedish rural context is uniquely positioned to provide insights into understanding the implications of the platform economy because of 1) the exceptionally robust rural internet coverage, 2) a rich and diverse range of rural economic sectors from large industries to support for small businesses, and 3) strong rural governance and a welfare state system.

Platform ruralism - Digital platforms and the t...


Against the background of increasing debate over the gig economy, this research aims to explore the intersection of food mediated through digital platforms with integration, migrant precarity and public and private spaces. A pilot case study has focused on exploring immigrant women's daily working experiences within a food app platform.

Platform-based services are rapidly transforming urban work, lives and spaces around the world. The rise of platforms dependent on largely expendable labour relations, with significant migrant involvement, must be seen as connected, and as replicating larger social processes rather than merely technological changes. This perspective paper urgently calls for an intersectional perspective to better understand social-technical relations crossing the digital-urban interface of platform urbanism in contemporary European cities. Critics of platforms and gig work, to date, have mainly focused on algorithms-based social control, degraded working conditions, problematic employment relations and precariousness of gig work. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has both disrupted and amplified these issues, intensifying the vulnerability of gig workers. For example, in Sweden, migrant groups and gig workers were separately identified as being hardest hit by Covid, but with little attention to the interconnectivity between these categories, nor to how these groups are co-positioned vis-a-vis larger socio-economic inequalities. Thus, we argue for a deeper understanding of the social processes underlying platforms and for active investigation of how inequalities are being produced and/or maintained in/by these processes. Urban planners, designers and policy makers will need to actively address the hybrid (digital and physical) urban spaces produced in platform urbanism in order to prevent spatial and economic inequalities. We argue for a stronger recognition of interrelated and overlapping social categories such as gender and migrant status as central to the construction of mutually constitutive systems of oppression and discrimination produced in and through the platform urbanism. 041b061a72


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