In this paper, we identify when and why migrant gig workers experience liminality in the socio-spatial context of food delivery in the Swedish gig economy. We analyse qualitative interviews and informal conversations with food delivery workers in Stockholm through the lens of the territory-place-scale-network (TPSN) framework as developed by Bob Jessop, Neil Brenner and Martin Jones. We find that workers are challenged to deal with triple liminality regarding their work identities, workplaces and work organisation through platforms. Focusing on liminality as a central aspect of gig work, we further find that despite having little worker agency, some of the study participants engage in what we call liminal agency, that is actively pursuing possibilities for progress in uncertain states of in-betweenness. By unpacking the liminal dynamics that especially migrant food delivery riders are confronted with in their daily working lives, this study contributes to the debate on the migrant gig economy, the spatial turn in organisation studies and efforts from human geography to understand agency in precarious gig work.
Weidenstedt, L., Geissinger, A., Leick, B., & Nazeer, N. (2023). Betwixt and between: Triple liminality and liminal agency in the Swedish gig economy. Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1177/0308518X231172984