Sunday, 2 October 2011

22.9. Creative work and workers.

This session was held in collaboration with Marjo Mäenpää's course CBM Concept Design, and with Visual culture MA program course Interaction of theory and art - "Tekijyys" or "Artistic practice" in Reposaari.

Marjo spoke of collective creativity and remix-culture. Taina about intellectual and immaterial work. Here again below some excerpts, and references and links on the right hand side.

Students also did a group task: the discussed in groups listing based on their own experience as immaterial information workers characteristics of work in relation to 1) space, 2) time, and 3) network of relations. On the basis of this they wrote a story of a fictional immaterial worker - some diaries, a cartoon, an essay by the son of an immaterial worker.

Listing here general characteristics of new immaterial work:

1. Work is not a specific activity - it is about general human abilities that are put to work, intellect, ability to language, feelings etc.
2. Work does not happen in a specific place reserved for working.
3. Work does not happen in a specific time reserved for working.
4. It is not about making a specific end-product, but about potentialities, that what is new and emerging.
5. Work has no specific individual subject: the subject of work is always a plurality, a multitude, a collective.

and requirements:

1. work requires ability to collaborate
2. it requires ability to imitate and recycle, be an opportunist
3. it requires innovativeness, ability to take risks
4. and it requires something extra, something that cannot be reduced to the task at hand - virtuosity.

Bologna: "Second-generation self-employed workers are members of what are known as »non-regulated professions«. Despite fifteen years of mandatory contributions, which have been increased significantly by Prodi’s government, they are only eligible for paltry benefits from the social security system. They have no form of self-protection – that is also a consequence of their fragmentation. We distinguish between the self-employed who can move freely on the »skills market«, the pseudo self-employed (who work, for example, for a single client and invoice the client every month) and casual workers/jobbers, who experience precarity as a »normal state of affairs«. Basically however all these groups are exposed to risk and the insecurity associated with precarisation.

A typical feature of the post-Fordist era is to-ing and fro-ing between various different employment relations, which has become necessary to secure one’s livelihood: sometimes one is an employee in a wage-based contractual relationship, then self-employed again, then unemployed once more etc."

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