In the academic debate, an increasing number of studies has addressed the disciplining function of the algorithmic management upon food-delivery workers. The technological infrastructure has been understood as a tool in the hands of the management, against which workers can only resist or succumb insofar as they comply (or not) with algorithmic prescriptions. Less attention has been given to what the interaction with algorithms is made of. By adopting riders’ point of view, this article explores the meanings and competences attached to such interaction, which shapes workers’ spatial and temporal experience. Framing the everyday encounters with algorithms as a “site of knowing” (Nicolini 2011), the paper shows the emergence of a professional vision within (a part of) riders’ community. The research draws on six-months Milan-based observant participation during which the author worked as a part-time rider, integrated with 21 in-depth interviews and a smallsized survey (n=130) with workers.

Bonifacio, F., Encountering algorithms in the urban space: a matter of knowledge. An enactive ethnography of riders’ work, <<Mediální studia / Media Studies>>, 2021; (2): 85-103 [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/219124]

Encountering algorithms in the urban space: a matter of knowledge. An enactive ethnography of riders’ work

Bonifacio, Francesco
2021

Abstract

In the academic debate, an increasing number of studies has addressed the disciplining function of the algorithmic management upon food-delivery workers. The technological infrastructure has been understood as a tool in the hands of the management, against which workers can only resist or succumb insofar as they comply (or not) with algorithmic prescriptions. Less attention has been given to what the interaction with algorithms is made of. By adopting riders’ point of view, this article explores the meanings and competences attached to such interaction, which shapes workers’ spatial and temporal experience. Framing the everyday encounters with algorithms as a “site of knowing” (Nicolini 2011), the paper shows the emergence of a professional vision within (a part of) riders’ community. The research draws on six-months Milan-based observant participation during which the author worked as a part-time rider, integrated with 21 in-depth interviews and a smallsized survey (n=130) with workers.
Inglese
Bonifacio, F., Encountering algorithms in the urban space: a matter of knowledge. An enactive ethnography of riders’ work, <<Mediální studia / Media Studies>>, 2021; (2): 85-103 [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/219124]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10807/219124
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