Informal Economy

Domestic Workers and Socioeconomic Rights: A South African Case Study (2013)

This report explores the challenges of empowering domestic workers in South Africa through the traditional trade union focus on worker rights, democratic voice and collective action. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded by the U.S.  Agency for International Development, to study the informal economy, migration, gender and rule of… [READ MORE]

Informal Workers’ Organizing (WIEGO, 2013)

In overviewing self-organizing among such informal economy workers as waste pickers, domestic workers and construction workers, this report finds the lines are increasingly blurred between jobs in the formal and informal economies. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, to study the informal… [READ MORE]

Trade Unions Organizing Workers “Informalized from Above”: Case Studies from Cambodia, Colombia, South Africa and Tunisia (Rutgers, 2013)

Four case studies examine successful union organizing among workers whose jobs have been privatized, outsourced or contracted out. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded by the U.S. Agency forInternational Development, to study the informal economy, migration, gender and rule of law together with research partners Rutgers and WIEGO. Download… [READ MORE]

Informal Workers and Collective Bargaining: Case Studies from India, Georgia, Brazil, Liberia and Uruguay (WIEGO, 2013)

This report details a set of case studies on collective bargaining by informal workers in four different countries: Waste pickers in Minas Gerais state in Brazil, beedi workers in India, Georgia minibus taxi workers and street vendors in Monrovia, Liberia. The study also references the efforts of domestic workers in Uruguay. Download here.    

DOMESTIC WORKERS: Winning Recognition and Protection (2013)

Many domestic workers around the world are vulnerable to exploitation and not recognized by national labor laws. But in the Dominican Republic, domestic workers have campaigned to make gains over the last two decades—and a new Solidarity Center report shows how. English (PDF) Arabic (PDF) French (PDF) Spanish (PDF) Sources

Emergent Solidarities: Labor Movement Responses to Migrant Workers in the Dominican Republic and Jordan (Rutgers, 2013)

This report explores examples of unions making significant change in their approaches to migrant worker organizing and how the Solidarity Center has played a role in shifting union thinking about migrant workers and supporting union engagement and activities. Part one of a two-part report. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded… [READ MORE]

Trade Union Organizing in the Informal Economy: A Review of the Literature on Organizing in Africa, Asia, Latin America, North America and Western, Central and Eastern Europe (Rutgers, 2013)

This report reviews the literature of efforts throughout the globe by workers who labor outside the formal labor economy of their countries to form or join trade unions as well as unions’ efforts to organize and represent them. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded by the U.S. Agency for… [READ MORE]

Home-based Workers in the Export Garment Sector in Bangladesh: An Exploratory Study in Dhaka City (Wiego, 2012)

Workers in the home-based export garment sector remain an invisible segment of the labor market, and this report is first step toward a systematic documentation of this phenomenon, with special emphasis on employment conditions, worker livelihoods and issues affecting unionization. This Solidarity Center report is part of a multiyear research project, funded by the U.S…. [READ MORE]