Social@risk™ services are based on scientifically sound concepts. Our services research intensive and each project is individually designed. We provide understandable intelligence on complex matters. We structure and interpret social media posts from workers and other stakeholders against the backdrop of abstract legal or ethical benchmarks such as freedom of association, forced labour, or living wages.
We strive to deliver tangible results and ask our partners to critically assess our contribution. To ensure that no money and time is wasted on flawed data or misconceptions our team develops Social@risk™ services in two stages: an explorative study followed by a full-scale study.
The insights are evaluated against the backdrop of a partner’s needs and competences. If the explorative study provided promising results, a partner can suggest moving on to a full-scale study.
We communicate the results of an explorative study with a workshop and an insight presentation. Insight presentations usually consist of three elements:
We find or develop frameworks for structuring and interpreting workers’ voices. Concepts are important to render connections visible, to understand causes and effects, and derive insights that matter for workers. However, concepts such as freedom of association, social dialogue, living wages, etc. are abstract and comprehensive while social media posts are concrete with brief messages. Finding workers’ voices and putting them into context is a complex puzzle that our experts need to solve.Read More
The structuring scheme above organises the following tasks: first, we need to search for information that tells us when and where a process of bargaining took place (hot spots). The next step is to find posts that mention involved representatives (parties) and the terms for negotiation (conditions). In order to evaluate the effectiveness of collective bargaining we also have to extract posts that inform about demands and outcomes. Finally, we have to understand how a specific collective bargaining event came about, i.e. is it a response to a strike or is it part of regular labour relations management?
We group all workers’ voices into topics and identify problems and themes. Topics are essential to structure practices of human and labour rights violations. Topics are more concrete than concepts because they do not aim at explaining a causal relationship. Their function is to summarize practices belonging to a specific theme such as overtime, inhumane management, or social security. We use topics to find patterns of rights violations. To this end we try to match them with information about location and time.Read More
We monitor topics over time. These trend analyses can help to uncover cyclical patterns of rights violations and plan the design and timing of activities strategically. Trend analyses are also a useful tool to follow up on preventive action or remedies.Read More
Pictures and videos are important as means of communication in social media. Visual material often provides powerful impressions that help to mobilise decision makers and co-workers. Workers use visual material to provide evidence when they find it difficult or too time consuming to say something with words or when they want to avoid censorship (recognizing text in images is relatively hard for censoring software).Read More
In addition to the four elements: “concept”, “topic”, “trend”, and “visuals”, a full-scale study entails a quantified social risk portfolio in order to compare the development and pervasiveness of different topics. Quantifying the risk of violating the rights to decent work and independent organising helps to define priority areas and manage resources effectively.
It is important to understand how labour rights violations come about in order to take preventive action. It is equally important to define priorities for allocating resources and coordinating actions. The chart below is an example of a risk exposure comparison. We look at three different manufacturer groups and compare them along various labour issues. The measures suggest that 4 out of 10 topics account for more than 75% of total risk exposure.
At the dorm there is no warm water to shower. None of the dorm toilets are ok. It is messy all over the place and the newcomers have no idea what they are supposed to do. The public bathroom is toxically dirty. Is there any way to get it into a somehow acceptable state? Many of us don’t use it at all. Will the water temperature be higher during wintertime?
It is said that traveling is a trip from your own misery to someone else’s misery. Changing work is the same – you hop from one pit into another. […] A new place, new feelings, everything is new. Admittedly earning money is important. But even more important is to feel that you are somebody, to have self-esteem. Being a humble servant, one among a million flowers is not enough (Worker’s post).
In this era of high technology, high-tech parks, high wages, and posh streets with big cars, I am at Z. Corp. silently praying to get three meals a day. I am getting more and more hungry and lose more and more weight (Worker’s post)