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Sarah Kessler: "The Gigged Economy"

Wednesday, March 27, 2019
7:30 p.m. Presentation and Q&A, Tech Valley Center of Gravity, 30 3rrd Street, Troy, NY 12180. See map.

Free and open to the public.

Sarah Kessler

Sarah Kessler, author of Gigged: The End of the Job and the Future of Work, a groundbreaking analysis of the new American freelance economy, will join the NYS Writers Institute for a talk and presentation 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, at the Tech Valley Center of Gravity, 30 3rd Street, Troy, NY 12180.

This event, cosponsored by the Upstate Alliance for the Creative Economy, is free and open to the public.

One in three American workers is now a freelancer, working with neither the guarantee of steady hours nor benefits. This "gig economy" emerged out of the digital era and has revolutionized the way we do business.

What does the future of work look like? Will millennials do as well their parents? Where can people find meaningful, well-paid work? Kessler's book addresses these questions as it looks at how gig workers (an Uber driver, an Amazon Mechanical Turk worker, and a programmer in New York, to name a few) are adapting to jobs that offer no health insurance, unemployment or retirement benefits.

In an interview with Fast Company, Kessler noted the perils of the gig economy. "Many decades ago, we made all these policies and laws that attach a kind of social safety net of programs to the idea of a traditional 9-to-5 job. If you’re a freelancer, you don’t have things like minimum wage or paid lunch breaks or workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance. So there’s a huge incentive to hire people that way. And I think that that is not going away, and that’s good for companies in bad times and that’s good for companies in good times."

Dan Lyons, New York Times bestselling author of Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble, praised Gigged: "In the tradition of Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed, Sarah Kessler goes behind the statistics to tell the stories of people making a living (sometimes just scraping by) as gig economy workers. Gigged is smart, entertaining, moving, and at times even inspiring. Sarah Kessler writes like a dream. If you want to know how work is changing and how you too must change to keep up, you must read this book."

Bestselling author Daniel H. Pink said, “With deep reporting and graceful storytelling, Sarah Kessler reveals the ground truth of a key part of the American workforce.”

Kessler, a journalist based in New York City, is an editor at Quartz. Previously, she covered the gig economy as a senior writer at Fast Company and managed startup coverage at Mashable. Her reporting has been cited by The Washington Post, New York Magazine, and NPR.

PBS Newshour: The 'gig' economy is uprooting the American workforce


Sarah Kessler: "Gigged: The End of the Job and the Future of Work" | Talks at Google


The False Promise Of The Gig Economy | Think | NBC News