Regulating digital labour platforms – the cooperative perspective: Results from CICOPA’s members survey

30 April 2024

On 1 May 2024, CICOPA is celebrating International Workers’ Day, also known as Labour Day.  

On this Labour Day, we are focusing on platform work. As the platform economy continues to grow, while it offers many opportunities, more and more challenges can be seen as well. Many platforms are characterised by poor working conditions and inadequate access to social protection; these platforms often define how the service must be performed, use an algorithm to control the workers, collect the payments and reap the profits. At the same time, cooperative platforms have also started to emerge across the world, which can provide a solution to tackling these issues, as they apply higher work and social standards.  

CICOPA conducted a survey to learn more about the challenges and prospects in the platform economy. The survey focused on digital labour platforms, that is, those platforms that organise and control the work of a group of workers that sell a certain service to customers. The survey was disseminated among CICOPA’s members, and the responses covered 18 countries across Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Americas, and Africa.  

The responses revealed that capitalistic platforms often commit violations and compete dishonestly. They tend to misclassify workers as self-employed, and they do not provide them with employment rights. From the point of view of platform cooperatives, the survey also showed that there are many obstacles for establishing and operating cooperative digital labour platforms, such as monopolies and unfair competition from large capitalistic platforms. To this end, survey respondents agreed that there is need for regulation and specific legislation on digital labour platforms. 


You can read our full report on the survey here.

French and Spanish versions will soon be avalable!