Research on Algorithmic Management accepted at International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS)

Uber, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Upwork, Clickworker, Prolific, Fiverr, among others are digital labor platforms which allows workers to perform tasks in exchange for money. These platforms coordinate a large number of jobs, workers, and clients simultaneously. They employ algorithmic systems for management in order to scale the large number of interactions. Our current research paper explores how workers perceive algorithmic management, with a focus on perceptions of disadvantages that algorithmic management practices create for workers. In this study, we interviewed 23 workers performing diverse types of work on platforms and living and working around the world in seven online focus groups. Our results show that algorithmic management practices are perceived as unfair by workers if they either automate decision-making, or hand off decisions to clients and execute their decisions in an automated way. This can cause systematic disadvantages to workers such as the devaluation of their work performance, denial of access to new jobs or the platform, or loss of earned assets.

We look forward to presenting the paper at ICIS in Copenhagen in December and taking away ideas from the discussions. If you have any questions, ideas or suggestions, please reach out. Our contact details are provided on the right.

Reference: Schulze, L., Trenz, M., Cai, Z., & Tan, C.-W. (2022). Algorithmic Unfairness on Digital Labor Platforms: How Algorithmic Management Practices Disadvantage Workers. ICIS 2022 Proceedings. Presented at the International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS), Copenhagen, Denmark. Copenhagen, Denmark.


Photo credits: Association for Information Systems