Title

From Precarious Labor to Precarious Economy? Planning for Precarity in Singapore's Creative Economy

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

6-2011

Abstract

The important place of the oftentimes "hidden" independent worker, or freelancer, has been acknowledged in developed countries where the creative economy has grown. These creative workers do not belong to the traditional employment set-up organized around firms. Instead, they move from portfolio to portfolio, assignment to assignment, interspersing corporation-based jobs with periods of self employment. Their work offers freedom, independence and creative space, but has also been characterized as precarious, because the securities of old working patterns no longer hold. While governments in many countries and cities have become attracted to the potential of the creative economy, those that have a strong tradition of economic planning, such as Singapore, will also have to come to grips with a new creative economy in which there exists a great deal more amorphousness and a hidden ecology. In this paper, I examine how the growth of "precarious labor" entails three shifts that the Singapore government is attempting to make in the face of a more "precarious economy": new methods in mapping and measurement, new directions in education and training, and new experiments in labor organization and management.

Keywords

Creative economy, Economic planning, Education, Freelancers, Labor organization, Singapore

Discipline

Asian Studies | Human Geography | Urban Studies

Research Areas

Humanities

Publication

City, Culture and Society

Volume

2

Issue

2

First Page

55

Last Page

64

ISSN

1877-9166

Identifier

10.1016/j.ccs.2011.05.002

Publisher

Elsevier

Additional URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ccs.2011.05.002