Democratizing and decommodifying work after Covid-19


Under the hashtag #democratizingwork, more than 3,000 researchers from over 600 universities worldwide have united to publish an op-ed in 36 newspapers in 31 countries on the 16th of May, issuing an urgent call (here The Guardian version) for rewriting the rules of our economic system to create a more democratic and sustainable society. Spearheaded by three scholars, Isabelle Ferreras, Dominique Méda, and Julie Battilana, the call centers on the way we work and organize production: exploiting humans and the natural environment in order to maximize shareholder profits. While this model has long been criticized not just by left-leaning politicians and civil society, but also from within the business community, the Covid-19 crisis has made disturbingly clear how deeply we are in a health, social, climate and political crisis. The call paves an alternative path forward, following three core principles: democratize (firms), decommodify (work), and remediate (policies) in order to respect planetary boundaries and make life sustainable for all. Will our leaders seize this historical opportunity in the right direction?

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