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|HOW GIG WORKERS IN SINGAPORE ARE ADAPTING TO NON-STANDARDIZED FORM OF WORK
|TEO YI NING
|TEO YI NING (2020-04-15). HOW GIG WORKERS IN SINGAPORE ARE ADAPTING TO NON-STANDARDIZED FORM OF WORK. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
|With the global rise of the gig economy, work in many places, including Singapore, is becoming increasingly destandardized. While traditional jobs were characterized by regular schedules and stable incomes, gig work is precarious, contingent and ondemand. This thesis looks at how gig workers use identity-construction techniques to adapt to their destandardized working conditions, and frame themselves as productive and capable workers, in spite of their precarious positions. I identified three types of worker identities among Singaporean Grab drivers – the enterprising worker, the industrious worker, and the transitory worker. Enterprising drivers use diversification and multi-apping techniques to frame gig work as attractive and challenging. Industrious workers invoke notions like discipline and commitment, to reconstruct gig work as a form of standardized, rather than on-demand, employment. Transitory drivers, meanwhile, internalize the precarity that comes with gig work and rationalize it as a temporary form of employment. My study of these three worker identities of Grab drivers in Singapore shows how the destandardization of work is leading people to frame themselves and their labor in different ways. This generates a renewed understanding of how the gig economy affects the way work and identities are understood, and how it may evolve.
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