Why do labour platforms negotiate? Platform strategies towards collective bargaining in tax-based welfare states

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This talk presents a new perspective on the impact of the gig economy on labour market regulations by addressing platform strategies towards collective bargaining. How do labour platforms respond to the challenges they meet when operating in highly organized labour markets with universal welfare settlements like the Danish? Do they engage in collective agreements and why? Theoretically, the analysis draws on theories of employer strategies, employment relations, welfare states and institutional theory. The empirical foundation is three in-depth case studies of labour platforms operating in Denmark, where the first company-level agreement was concluded by the platform Hilfr in 2018, supplemented by desk research and interviews. Since the first agreement, a number of platforms in the Nordics has utilized the collective bargaining system in various ways. However, this path dependency seems mainly to be driven by platforms using the employment relations system to handle challenges experienced with the tax-based welfare state and remove barriers of growth.