unpacking the crisis: un(der)employment, entrepreneurship, participation and resistance


Since the start of the global financial crisis there has been a significant shift in the way people work, participate and get organized in their daily lives. These changes need to be understood as a challenge to existing organizational forms. These new forms of organizing (and the new socio-economic conditions within which these forms are becoming embedded) are expanding our understanding of work, employment and participation.

There has been an increase in both precarious employment and unemployment. Traditionally, both unemployment and unstable employment have been perceived as an ‘illness’ that needs to be overcome both personally and socially. And yet, in developed labour markets, work patterns are becoming increasingly fragmented, pushing employment vulnerability and its organizational and social consequences to higher levels. As the recent events in Southern Europe have indicated, employment vulnerability can lead to a wide range of negative individual, social and organizational consequences. At the same time, however, newly formed groups of un(der)employed seem to be responding in novel ways to the vulnerability of employment; developing new organizing possibilities starting from global protest movements to local community support arrangements.

This webpage attempts to provide parallel readings on how we are collectivelly dealing with emerging forms of understading employment, and to a broader extent, our relation to others (be it the employer, the other or the collective). Those parallel readings will emerge from the geographical locations where the SOW team is working.