Informalisation in Low-Wage Labour Markets: A Case-Study of the UK Food Industry

Scott, Sam ORCID: 0000-0002-5951-4749 (2017) Informalisation in Low-Wage Labour Markets: A Case-Study of the UK Food Industry. Population, Space and Place, 23 (7). e2043. doi:10.1002/psp.2043

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Informalisation is a process that involves the lowering of the floor for pay and working conditions, sometimes legally and sometimes illegally, and it may occur in both formal and informal labour market settings. This paper examines what informalisation looks like in practice in the UK context. Drawing on the experiences of 62 low-wage migrant workers, employed in the UK food industry, the paper identifies five facets of ‘informalisation’, namely: job insecurity, work intensification, worker expendability, worker subordination and employment intermediation. The identification of these five facets of informalisation is important in its own right. In addition, the UK case study also serves to emphasise the fact that the degradation of work is not something that is simply confined to the margins but is evident in the mainstream (beyond irregular workers and beyond the informal economy).

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Exploitation; Informalisation; Labour; Low-wage; Migration; Worker
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business > HF5549 Personnel management. Employment management
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Education and Science
Research Priority Areas: Place, Environment and Community
Depositing User: Sam Scott
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2016 07:49
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2023 15:32

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