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RSM Seminar | Drs Mysore Seshadrinath and Gurca

RSM Seminar | Drs Mysore Seshadrinath and Gurca

Designing Effective and Non-Exploitative Gig Economy Platforms

Through a longitudinal qualitative case study of Cloud Factory, an online gig economy platform with a declared social mission, this paper provides a dynamic dialectical analysis that captures the production and transformation of novel organizational designs in the gig economy. The study reveals insights into the process of organizational becoming showing how organizational designs are established, maintained and transformed by an interplay of a dynamic set of dialectic tensions. We find three dialectic tensions pertinent to gig economy platforms, namely fairness-profitability, quality-scalability and trustvigilance, and demonstrate that a combination of pragmatic and empathic practices and a managed evolution of the business model enables such platforms to (temporarily) achieve a synthetic resolution of these tensions. Informed by the experience of social enterprises, this analysis expands our understanding of the design and operation of efficient, yet non-exploitative gig economy platforms and provides extensive insights into how pragmatic and empathic goals, actions, practices and organizational actors are critical in balancing the diverging interests of stakeholders and developing a sustainable organizational design.

Key words: gig economy, dialectics, tensions, organizational design, platforms, social entrepreneurship, case study


Dr Sandeep Mysore Seshadrinath is a Lecturer in Information Systems and Technology Management at UNSW Business School. He holds a PhD in Business & Management from Loughborough University, UK. In his dissertation he studied impact sourcing - a social innovation in outsourcing, in which he explored processes and strategies of social entrepreneurship, community engagement and sociocultural transitions. Broadly, his research interests lie in the social study of information systems, with a special focus on digitally-enabled social transformations. He has published his work in reputed journals such as Information Systems Journal, Information & Management and The Journal of Strategic Information Systems.

Dr Andrei Gurca is Assistant Professor of Strategy at NEOMA Business School, Reims, France. He holds a PhD degree in Strategy and Innovation Management from Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK. His research focuses on the process of technology innovation in emerging markets. Related topics that feature in his research include the outsourcing of innovation to emerging markets, open innovation and social innovation.

Updated:   1 May 2020 / Responsible Officer:  CBE Communications and Outreach / Page Contact:  College Web Team