Platform for City Culture and Public Debate


Work Won’t Love You Back

w/ Sarah Jaffe, Guy Standing and Marguerite van den Berg

Date: 3 July 2022
Time: 20:00 / Drinks 19:30
Location: Arminius, Museumpark 3, Rotterdam
Admission: € 10,00 (regular) / € 6,00 (reduction for -26/students/jobseekers)
Language: English

The last decade has seen a seismic shift in attitudes towards work and the idea of labour. Whether it is through the rise of the gig economy, the rapid proliferation of the new creator economy, or the pandemic-induced break from traditional office culture: work has seeped into our lives, literally invading our homes. At the same time more and more of us are pushed to make sacrifices for the privilege of being able to do work we enjoy. It has led to the idea that certain work is not really work, and should be done for the sake of passion rather than pay.

The changing nature of work has heightened existing precariousness for many. There’s a growing number of people facing lives of insecurity, on zero-hour contracts, moving in and out of jobs that in the end give little meaning to their lives. We have started to work more and more, and get less and less in return. 

Together with American labour journalist Sarah Jaffe (Work Won’t Love You Back), British labour economist Guy Standing (The Precariat) and Dutch sociologist Marguerite van den Berg (Work is Not a Solution) we will set out to bring into focus what is wrong with our perceptions of work, and what we can do to fundamentally transform our current labour markets.


Sarah Jaffe

Sarah Jaffe is a Type Media Center fellow and an independent journalist for The New York Times, The Guardian, The Nation and many other outlets. She is the author of the 2021 book Why Work Won’t Love You back: How Devotion to Our Jobs Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted and Alone and co-host of the Belabored Podcast about labour organizing.

Guy Standing

Guy Standing is Professorial Research Associate at SOAS, University of London and co-founder of the Basic Income Earth Network. He is the author of The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class (2022), The Corruption of Capitalism: Why Rentiers Thrive and Work Doesn’t Pay (2016) and Battling Eight Giants: Basic Income Now (2020).

Marguerite van den Berg

Marguerite van den Berg is associate professor of Sociology at the University of Amsterdam who writes about work, precarisation, reproduction, cities and dress. In 2021 she published Werk is Geen Oplossing (‘Work Is Not a Solution’) about the place of paid work in our lives.

Geert Maarse

Geert Maarse is a journalist and programme-maker. Having worked for Erasmus University for over five years, he is specialized in connecting scientific research to public debate. He has a background in Business Administration and Cultural Studies. He is the founder and regular host of Studio Erasmus, a monthly science magazine broadcasted by OPEN Rotterdam. He worked on a documentary and published in a number of online and offline media (de Volkskrant, Vers Beton, Erasmus Magazine).