Organizational and Occupational Dynamics, Technology and Society, Worker Well-Being and Thriving, Future of Work
Making Out While Driving: Control, Coordination and its Consequences in the On-Demand Economy
My dissertation examines how the shift from employment to tasks and human to algorithmic managers effect the nature of control and the experience of work. Drawing on an twenty-six month inductive field of the largest sector of the on-demand economy – the ride-hailing industry where the entire work process is structured by algorithms managing tasks or rides – this research first defines and describes algorithmic work, a set of job-related activities that are structured by algorithms, and then explores its lived experience. Drivers respond to algorithmic nudges with a corresponding set of work strategies, either acquiescing or deviating from suggested behavior. While these work strategies appear at odds, as drivers either follow or ignore algorithmic instructions, drivers employ each strategy as a form of outlier mitigation in order to avoid bad tasks/rides and maximize good tasks/rides and ensure a steady stream of work. This research demonstrates that, while algorithms may be seen as an impersonal and, at times, unforgiving taskmaster, the active management of outliers plays a central role in drivers’ successfully navigating algorithmic work. In sum, my work extends existing the managerial control literature by incorporating algorithms and suggests that the interplay between organizations, algorithms, and workers is a central strategic concern for organizations that employ algorithms and their workers.
Committee: Jerry Davis (Chair), Jane Dutton, Seth Carnahan (Strategy), Tawanna Dillahunt (Information Science), Beth Bechky (NYU, Stern)
- Cameron, L., Garrett, L.E, Spreitzer, G.M. Contingent, Contract, and Alternative Work Arrangements. Oxford Bibliographies in Management. Forthcoming
- Kamaswaren, V., Cameron, L., Dillahunt, T. (2018) Support for Social and Cultural Capital Development in Real-time Ridesharing Services. Computer-Human Interactions. CHI 2018: ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. [Acceptance Rate 25%]
- Spreitzer, G.M., Cameron, L., & Garrett, L.E. (2017). Alternative Work Arrangements: Two Images of the New World of Work. Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior, 4: 473-499.
Manuscripts Under Review and Working Papers
- Hafenbrack, A.* Cameron, L.*, Spreitzer, G., Noval, L., Zhang, C. & Shaffakat, S.. “Helping Others by Being in the Present Moment: Mindfulness and Prosocial Behavior at Work” Revise and Resubmit Requested at Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
- *Shared First authorship
- Mayer, D., McCluney, C., Cameron, L., Nurmohamed, S. (Preparing for Submission). “Show me the money?: The Business vs. Ethical Case for Diversity in Corporations.” Targeted for submission to AMJ in June 2018
- Cameron, L. (Working Paper). “The Sound, Smells, and Tastes that Bind Us: Materiality in the Process of Organizational Identification in Diverse Communities” Target: Organization Science
Research in Progress
- Cameron, L. (Dissertation, Writing). “Making Out While Driving: Control, Coordination, and its Consequences in Algorithmic Managed Work.”
- Cameron, L. & Meuris, J.* (Data Collection). “Within-Person Income Precarity and Well-Being”.
- *Shared First Authorship.
- Zhang, C., Wu, B., Cameron, L., Lee, J. (Idea Generation/Data Collection) “Work and Time Pressure Demands in On-Demand Work: A Field Experiment.”
- Lee, J., Cameron, L., Spreitzer, G. (Data Collection). Optimal Distinctiveness and Interpersonal Affirmation.
- I have short essays under review at literary magazines and am featured in two books, Young Women of Achievement: A Resource for Girls in Math, Science, and Technology (by Frances Karnes and Kristen Stephens) and Chatter: The Conversations We Have With Ourselves, Why They Matter, and How to Control Them (by Ethan Kross).