Access to social security for digital platform workers in Germany and in Russia: a comparative study

Olga Chesalina


A common feature of platform work in Germany and Russia is that in both countries the new forms of employment can usually only be classified as self-employed work in the form of ‘solo self-employment’, despite the fact that platforms use direct and indirect control mechanisms indicating a personal or at least an economic dependency of the digital workers on the platforms. The difference is that, in Germany, as the main rule, self-employed persons are not obligatorily insured in the state pesion insurance scheme, whereas in Russia, unlike Germany, the state pension insurance scheme is mandatory for all self-employed persons.
Considering the different legal frameworks in Germany and in Russia, the article analyses various reform proposals aiming at tackling the above-mentioned challenges for the social security systems, and looks for adequate responses to ensure access to social security for digital platform workers. In particular, the following questions are investigated: Is it sufficient to subsume digital work under the existing employment categories? Could it be an appropriate solution for the access of digital workers to social security to introduce a new employment category only in social law?


digital platform worker; social security; self-employed person

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Spanish Labour Law and Employment Relations Journal
DTCENS Labor Law, Economics Changes and New Society Research Group - Carlos III University of Madrid
EISSN: 2255-2081