Crowdwork is a novel form of digitally mediated work arrangement that is managed and organized through online labor platforms. This paper focuses on the governance of platforms that facilitate creative work—that is, complex work tasks that require high-level skill and creative workers. Crowdwork platform governance faces numerous challenges as a result of technology mediation, scalable and distributed workers, and temporary work arrangements. Creative crowdwork platforms, such as Topcoder, typically require additional governance structures to manage complex tasks. However, we know relatively little about creative crowdwork platform governance, as most existing studies focus on routine work platforms, such as Amazon Mechanical Turk. Accordingly, this paper explores how incumbent and insurgent creative crowdwork platforms are governed under centralized and decentralized modes. We conducted a comparative case study based on the analysis of two different cases: Topcoder, a successful commercial platform with a largely centralized governance structure, and CanYa, an emerging innovative platform based on blockchain technology with more decentralized governance. We identified and classified different governance elements related to work control and work coordination. In addition, we explored the characteristics of creative crowdwork platform governance with different degrees of centralization. Keywords: Crowdwork Governance, Creative Crowdwork, Centralized Platforms, Decentralized Platforms, Blockchain, Tokenomics.
Shafiei Gol, Elham; Avital, Michel; and Stein, Mari-Klara, (2019). "CROWDWORK PLATFORMS: JUXTAPOSING CENTRALIZED AND DECENTRALIZED GOVERNANCE". In Proceedings of the 27th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS), Stockholm & Uppsala, Sweden, June 8-14, 2019. ISBN 978-1-7336325-0-8 Research Papers.