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Covid-19 and the Indian Platform Economy:
Is there Room for Women?

Wednesday, 10 June 2020, 6:00 - 7:30 pm (IST)

Hosted By

Gig-based freelance work is increasingly becoming a sector of choice for the young work force in urban India, especially young women. Read more The flexibility and autonomy of time-use and decent remunerations, make this work relatively more attractive for women than jobs with fixed timings. However, there also uncertainties that comes with doing gig work: regular assignments are hard to come by, and without any safety nets, workers involved in the gig economy face financial insecurities. These challenges get aggravated in times of economic downturn such as in the current COVID-19 crisis. IWWAGE and The Asia Foundation hosted this webinar to discuss existing and emerging issues in the gig economy, with a focus on women workers. Panellists talked about the impact of the lockdown on gig platforms; how the industry is reacting to the shock and; potential investments and policy interventions necessary to ensure that female gig workers, particularly low and middle rung service providers, are protected.

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Here is the recoding from the webinar


Abhay Mathur

Senior VP-Finance, Urban Company

Gillian Dowie

Senior Program Officer,
International Development
Research Centre

Rituparna Chakraborty

Co-Founder and Executive Vice
President, TeamLease Services Ltd

Ruchika Chaudhary

Senior Research Fellow, IWWAGE

Sabina Dewan

Founder & Executive Director,
JustJobs Network

Silky Raheja

Head – SANKALP (A World Bank
Initiative) and Planning at National
Skill Development Corporation


Nandita Baruah

Country Representative, India

Nandita Baruah is The Asia Foundation’s country representative in India, and formerly served as deputy country representative in Nepal. She has over 25 years of professional experience working on gender, human rights, labor migration and human trafficking issues in South and Southeast Asia. She has headed South Asia regional programs on gender-based violence, human trafficking and migration and rural development. She worked as the Gender Advisor to the CIDA in India and also as the South Asia Regional Gender Fund Manager. She was the Regional Coordinator for the UN Women anti-trafficking program and the UNODC UN-GIFT program. She has served with USAID India as the regional anti-trafficking and gender specialist. In these roles Nandita Baruah worked to support national governments and civil society partners to design and deliver programs that effectively address the core socio-economic and political dimension of development through a rights-based and gender-equitable framework. She has worked in India, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Cambodia and Nepal. Nandita Baruah has extensive experience as a gender trainer and has provided regional and national-level training on gender issues to wide variety of stakeholders such as judges, police officers, agriculturalist, government officials, and corporate sector representatives.