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How online gig economy reshapes the international labour market amid Covid-19

Enabled by the Internet technology, online digital employment platforms have presented opportunities for employers and freelancers to find each other regardless of their physical locations and at lower administrative and search costs. The evolution of the online gig economy generated new paradigms in the labour market in several aspects including: a new mode of position-candidate search and matching; cross-regional employment; pay level parity; and a labour valuation equilibrium based on online records and feedback systems. Covid-19 has caused dramatic job cuts and forced furlough. While unemployment figures are being closely watched, we will evaluate the impact of the structural change by monitoring the online gig employment platforms and testing whether they are opening up new opportunities for both businesses and workers. We hope to derive insights that will help understand entrepreneurship and inform policies aimed at small businesses and the self-employed - groups that are heavily hit amid this pandemic.

Lead investigator:

Yuan Gao


University of East Anglia

Primary topic:

Jobs, work, pay & benefits

Secondary topic:

Business, big & small

Region of data collection:


Status of data collection

In Progress

Type of data being collected:

Publicly available

Unit of real-time data collection


Start date


End date




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