Co-editors: Philippe Pochet, Vera Šćepanović, Maarten Keune

Managing Editor: Marina Luttrell 

Attempts to use or adapt categories and mind-sets still anchored in the 20th century wage labour society in order to comprehend work practices in global labour markets are now commonly recognised to have reached their functional limits of significance. The five articles published in this issue of Transfer take a different approach. They propose problematics that find coherence in the far-reaching changes in employment relationship norms in the context of globalisation, through what they term as ‘work and employment grey zones’, an alternative to dualistic approaches.

The introductory article, by Marie-Christine Bureau and Patrick Dieuaide, presents the problematics of work and employment grey zones. It sets out the overall framework for comparison of the variety of work situations and their underlying rationales, presented in the articles that follow, that are out of sync with established norms and categories. Beyond the recognised blurring of legal boundaries between wage labour and independent work, these work phenomena arise within, outside or on the margins of employment norms. More broadly, the analysis emphasises the usefulness of the notion of grey zones in depicting the singularity and diversity of the dynamics of 21st century labour market transformations and institutional changes. These dynamics, or mechanisms of change, include: the ‘decoherence’ of employment categories on account of the proliferation of areas of legal voids and the strategies adopted by numerous stakeholders tending towards ever more porous rules; the multiplicity of norms and of the scales at which they interact; and the disconnection between the spheres of public policies and the beneficiaries who actually have access to them. As national authorities and regulations are being undermined, the notion, as it is defined here, provides insight into how employment norms compete, from the global North to the global South, in an unequally globalising economy. More...

The whole issue can be found here

  • Editorial, Jean-Yves Boulin and Donna Kesselman
  • Main Articles
    • Institutional change and transformations in labour and employment standards: an analysis of ‘grey zones’ 261 Marie-Christine Bureau and Patrick Dieuaide
    • Collective actions on the margins of the salariat, Marie-Christine Bureau and Antonella Corsani
    • Grey zones and triangulation of the employment relationship in globalisation: a business policy approach Patrick Dieuaide
    • The grey zone and labour market dynamics in Germany: new regulations and new ways of using employment categories. Self-employment and traineeships Olivier Giraud and Arnaud Lechevalier
    • Labour, self-entrepreneurship in Brazil and paradoxes of social freedom Cinara L Rosenfield
  • Book Reviews
    • Anton Hemerijck (ed.) The Uses of Social Investment, Reviewed by: Vera Šćepanović
    • Isabelle Ferreras Firms as Political Entities. Saving Democracy through Economic Bicameralism, Reviewed by:
      Sara Lafuente Hernandez

Table of contents