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KLI Employment & Labor Brief No. 104 (2020-11): Platform Workers: Their Numbers and Characteristics
KLI Employment & Labor Brief No. 104 (2020-11): Platform Workers: Their Numbers and Characteristics
  • Table of Contents

    Table of Contents

     

    . Introduction

    . Platform Workers: Numbers and Characteristics

    III. Platform Labor: Autonomy and Dependency

    IV. General Characteristics Including Income

    V. Demographic Characteristics

     

     

    Summary

     

    This article is intended to report the results of a recent survey conducted by the Korea Labor Institute and the Ministry of Employment and Labor to determine the size and the characteristics of Korea’s platform economy. In this article, platform labor is primarily defined as “an employment form that uses an online platform such as a mobile app or a website to enable organizations or individuals to find customers or jobs.” Among the broadly-defined category of platform workers, users of simple job search apps and e-commerce workers are excluded due to their exchanges not being platform-mediated. The number of the remaining ones, i.e. platform workers in the narrow sense, is estimated to be 220,000 persons, and about 52% of them are in the delivery and transport sectors. The results indicate that the heterogeneity within platform labor is very high, and that there are vastly different degrees of autonomy in setting the price of services, choosing tasks to be performed, selecting working hours, as well as receiving performance appraisal.