The future of work… as determined by Uber?
Interview with David Weil by Molly Wood
Marketplace Tech. 11.26.20
As the pandemic recession drags on, people are turning to gig work to fill the gaps, and the nature of that work is evolving. Proposition 22 in California, which passed this month, lets companies classify delivery and ride-hail drivers as independent contractors. There are some new requirements, such as a wage floor and some health benefit options.
Some describe it as a “third way,” between benefit-free part-time work and traditional full-time employment. If the idea catches on more broadly, what could it mean for how we work? I spoke with David Weil, dean at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. He told me about the origin of the idea. The following is an edited transcript of our conversation.
David Weil: Well, the third way comes, in fact, from Canada, where there is a concept of what’s called a dependent contractor, where you have a set of protections that are designed for independent contractors that really rely on a single or a small number of major employers who are contracting their business to protect independent contractors who really had this level of dependency. But I think the problem of the third way is the fact that Canada starts in a very different place than workers in this country start.
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