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  1. Most of the social entrepreneurs I spoke to did not expect their businesses ever to develop into behemoth corporations. But that isn’t the point: they believe there is an optimal size for a business that should serve the recurring needs of the world and shift consumption norms by connecting consumer habits with values of fairness and sustainability.
    Tags: por arriazu (2015-04-03)
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  2. Welby has big ideas about what that means. "I’m committed to farm-to-table, but the ‘to’ is the gray area, for everybody," she says."All consumers and producers, we’re getting really good at what the farm is, know thy farmer and all that. And we’re really clear about the ethics of the retailer—what are Whole Foods’ practices? Who runs the grocery store? But the ‘to’ is widely ignored, and for good reason: it’s a fucking mess."
    Tags: por arriazu (2015-02-28)
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    Tags: , por arriazu (2014-12-04)
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  4. Some of these smaller countries with more agile governments--the Netherlands, Israel, Singapore--will have an advantage, because regulation is going to start to become a hindrance for innovation. Innovation at a large scale means that you're eroding some of the existing work forces and large businesses that are the tax base. And often, a government's first reaction to that is to put up regulatory barriers.
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    por juanr (2014-09-01)
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  7. Crichton’s argument goes like this: The on-demand economy, embodied by services like Uber and TaskRabbit, puts workers “fundamentally in control of their economic lives” because they can choose their working hours and therefore “develop their own personalities and brands.” Algorithms could “provide a vastly improved market for work… more convenient, safe and lucrative,” thus finally obsoleting not only labor unions, but also employment laws.

    Per Crichton’s piece, the improvements come mainly in terms of flexibility, which used to be “the exclusive preserve of elite talent” – not only does this have benefits of convenience, but health too, because “control over one’s work” reduces stress and “can literally extend a worker’s life expectancy.”

    TravelUnions, meanwhile, were previously useful for establishing a model of full-time employment with benefits such as leave and pensions. However, the new generation want “passion careers” where they can mix “cooking, Egyptian hieroglyphic travel blogging, and some regression analysis of health data,” and are more interested in fun than higher salaries. This is because they’re not as materialistic as those full-employment fogies.

    And what about workers’ rights? Well, if Uber doesn’t pay enough then drivers can and will move to competitors that “pay better or offer a superior work environment.” Algorithms will “compete against each other for talent.” In the light of all this innovation, it’s “disappointing” that unions are trying to perpetuate “old modes of work.”

    However, the workers themselves need to have a say in how this new world develops. The idea that a handful of platforms operating on razor-thin margins will create an equitable world for their workers — that algorithms written by the employers will protect workers’ rights better than the workers themselves and their elected representatives could — would be funny if the reality of this model weren’t so outright terrifying.

    Ultimately, if work is to truly benefit the worker, she needs to have a voice and real clout. Maybe the traditional union model and traditional labor laws won’t provide that, but the underlying goals of that model and those laws — to make sure employers can’t exploit employees — must be central to this brave new world of work. We just need new ways of achieving this, not to stop trying
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    Tags: , por arriazu (2014-01-22)
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