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Self-employed update: Do we really need saving from ourselves?

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

At ICA, we come across all sort of weird attacks on the self-employed. But one of the strangest is that we ‘screw over ourselves’. That was the argument mounted in California’s self-described ‘premier monthly business publication’, Comstock.

The ‘save us from ourselves’ argument was essentially the justification for Australia’s recent (fortunately failed) attempt to destroy the businesses of 35,000 owner-drivers. Lawyers are preparing the case for the class action to recover losses. Info here.  More...


UK self-employment surges—again

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

It’s happened again. Self-employment in the United Kingdom has risen again, this time by 154,000 in the three months to December 2015, thereby making up more than half of the increase in UK jobs. We’ve been observing this since 2013. You’d think this surge in self-employment would level out at some stage, but it’s not happening yet. 

It’s a structural change in the UK economy and society with significant political standing. A demonstration of this occurred just last week. Our UK ‘sister’ organization IPSE (Independent Professionals and Self-Employed) attended 10 Downing Street as part of PM David Cameron’s preparation for his negotiations in Brussels over the UK-European Union agreement.  More...


The rise and rise of self-employment

Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Australian union movement has this week been debating its future. It’s worried. Its membership in the private sector is plunging below 14 per cent of the workforce (less than 17 per cent overall). It’s frantic that new disruptive technologies such as Uber, job networking, crowd-sourced funding and more will create an explosion in self-employment. It is horrified that people will become their own bosses!  More...


The world of work has moved on while the discrimination and misnomers have not

Monday, April 13, 2015

ICA was contacted by an independent contractor last week, upset that he’d been told he had to become an employee. He consults to a large, international IT company and was three months into a 12-month contract. He refused and has left them.

The point he made was that if an employee is forced to become an independent contractor, the employer would face sham contracting action. Yet when the reverse happens, there’s nothing. It shows the institutional and attitudinal hypocrisy displayed towards self-employed people. It’s a discrimination that we at ICA are dedicated to fighting.  More...


Productivity Commission Inquiry could prove valuable

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Just last week the debate over workplace issues revved up again with the release by the Abbott government of its Productivity Commission inquiry into workplace relations. Naturally, the unions and the ALP are salivating at the idea that this will be a re-run of WorkChoices, almost guaranteeing them a win at the next election. ICA will be putting a submission to the Inquiry. More...


Exotic dancers and the tyranny of the status quo?

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Since 2012 ICA has been tracking the extraordinary debate happening in the UK about the ‘evils’ of self-employment. The debate was first ignited by the UK Trades Union movement. UK self-employment has doubled since 1975 to be now 15 per cent of the workforce (4.5 million people). Incredibly, UK unions say this is socially destructive.

Earlier this year a union-orientated think-tank, the Resolution Foundation, made similar claims.   More...


New EU research: More escaping "wage slavery"

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Important new research released in April has found that the number of independent professionals (iPros) in Europe has increased 45 per cent since 2004. Undertaken for the Professional Contractors Group in the UK, the study not only presents data on a country-by-country basis, but also includes profiling results which show that the major determinants for choosing self-employment are a sense of fulfilment and flexibility in working patterns. More...


Classifying independent contractors: Two different approaches

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

ICA has previously discussed the dire situation facing self-employed people in Massachusetts. It is clear that its anti-self-employment laws are blatantly discriminatory. If anything, the situation in 'mad Massachusetts' seems to be getting worse. Our friends at ‘New Jobs for Massachusetts’ have provided us with a story about ‘Heinz’, a specialist electrical contractor who tried to set up business in Massachusetts. He was literally forced to leave the state because of its ‘dumb’ laws. And now it appears that franchise operations are in disarray because of those same anti-contractor laws.  More...


What makes a good self-employed entrepreneur?

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Poland is now the sixth largest economy in Europe with a projected growth rate in 2014 some 57 per cent higher than the rest of Europe. Poland’s entrepreneurs are driving this. What makes a good self-employed entrepreneur? Read this discussion paper from some researchers at universities in Turkey and Austria. They are into ‘myth explosion’. More...


Moscow Ambulance Entrepreneurs?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

We’re not sure if this is ‘entrepreneurship’, but did you hear about Moscow ambulances drivers providing busy executives with express taxi services in their ambulances?! Details here.   More...



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