The Sustainable Economies Law Center
We want to live in a world where every person has satisfying options for making their livelihood, including through participation in cooperative enterprises, micro-enterprises, social enterprises, nonprofit enterprises, low-profit enterprises, and gift-economy enterprises.
SELC’s Program on Work in the New Economy seeks to navigate and overcome legal barriers that prevent people from participating in sharing economy enterprises.
Why Work in the New Economy?
Particularly during times of economic recession and high unemployment, people experience a strong pull to put their time and skills to use, make a contribution, learn, and obtain sustenance in non-traditional ways. To that end, the new economy is characterized by the abundant growth of cooperative enterprises, micro-enterprises, social enterprises, nonprofit enterprises, low-profit enterprises, and gift-economy enterprises. The typical employer-employee relationship does not always fit well within such enterprises. While wage and hours laws are needed to protect workers, they also prevent people from forming their own cooperatives, from volunteering, or from receiving compensation in non-cash form. SELC’s Program on Work in the New Economy seeks to develop the vision, knowledge, and ideas necessary to change the legal structures and to allow the growth of more sustainable enterprises and livelihoods.
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