Gig Economy, Solo-Self-employment and Freelancers in the Knowledge Economy

The philosopher Heraclitus of Ephesus was right. Centuries before the start of our modern Christian computation of time, he claimed that everything is changing and nothing stands still. Speaking of capitalistic societies, Joseph A. Schumpeter (1942) stated back in 1942 that capitalism must be seen as an evolutionary process, which, by its nature, never can be stationary. Societies are in a flow. Nowadays, of course, things are also changing. A technological revolution centred on information and communication technologies has reshaped and still is reshaping the fundamental basis of our society. With respect to the division of work and occupations, we see the emergence of new professions, freelanced activities and small firms. Also, self-employment is on a revival and especially (female) solo-self-employment. Much is summarized under the label of a newly emerging gig economy. The track will ask for links between gig economy, solo-self-employment and freelancers and for different facets of labor, services, and companies. The educational careers of people being involved in the gig economy are of interest as well as their social and economic conditions, biographies, risks and social certainties. The track asks for all aspects related to one or the other item in the track title.

Topics are welcome among others on:

  • Knowledge and self-employment
  • Knowledge, services and freelanced activities
  • Nature and empirical faces of the gig economy
  • Hybrid self-employment and puzzles of work activities
  • Self-employment and gender
  • Self-employment and migration
  • Taxonomy of freelancers
  • Solo-self-employment and self-employment: theoretical and empirical developments
  • New markets, new professions in the gig and knowledge economy
  • Biographies of small entrepreneurs and freelancers
  • Problems of social and economic security: Do those actors serve to become a sort of  modern day laborers?


Track Chair

Radwan A. R. Kharabsheh
Hashemite University, Jordan