Why Take the Risk? Motivations of Highly Skilled Workers to Participate in Crowdworking Platforms

Elham Shafiei Gol, Mari-Klara Stein, Michel Avital

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportKonferencebidrag i proceedingsForskningpeer review


Crowdwork is a new class of work arrangement that involves compensated work organized through online labor platforms. Crowdwork platforms that focus on complex projects and require skillful, creative workers rely on winner-takes-all competition among multiple crowdworkers, where the likelihood of winning and getting paid is relatively small. Given that skillful, creative workers are in high demand, it begs the question why they would take the risk involved in crowdwork in lieu of the certainty that comes with traditional work arrangements. Subsequently, in this short paper, we explore what motivates such professionals to seek work in crowdwork platforms. We conducted an exploratory qualitative study based on interviews with crowdworkers on the Topcoder platform. Our preliminary findings suggest that while highly-skilled, creative crowdworkers may exhibit risk-seeking behavior in the context of employment, they are motivated to endure the assumed risk by a sense of psychological safety, a sense of autonomy as well as self-growth opportunities, which are critical to attracting and retaining professional workers. This intriguing finding suggests that gig economy platforms may offer not only ephemeral jobs, but also an appealing work environment that can nurture professional workers and cultivate sustainable communities of practice.
TitelProceedings of the 39th International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS)
Antal sider9
UdgivelsesstedAtlanta, GA
ForlagAssociation for Information Systems. AIS Electronic Library (AISeL)
ISBN (Elektronisk)9780996683173
StatusUdgivet - 2018
BegivenhedThe 39th International Conference on Information Systems. ICIS 2018: Bridging the Internet of People, Data, and Things - San Francisco, USA
Varighed: 13 dec. 201816 dec. 2018
Konferencens nummer: 39


KonferenceThe 39th International Conference on Information Systems. ICIS 2018
BySan Francisco
NavnProceedings of the International Conference on Information Systems


  • Crowdwork
  • Creative work
  • Risk
  • Motivation
  • Psychological safety
  • Topcoder