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Digital Society Initiative

Karin Schwiter

Karin Schwiter, Prof. Dr.

  • Labour Geography

Karin Schwiter has been Assistant Professor of Labour Geography with a focus on digitalisation at the Faculty of Science of the University of Zurich since August 1, 2021. She is one of the DSI professors and co-leader of the DSI Community Work.

Karin Schwiter completed her doctorate in 2010 at the Centre for Gender Studies at the University of Basel on the life plans of young adults in the field of tension between individuality and gender norms. As a postdoc in the National Research Programme 60, she researched persistent patterns of gender segregation in educational and professional careers in Switzerland. From 2013-2021, Karin Schwiter headed the research group «Work, Migration and Gender» at the Chair of Economic Geography at the University of Zurich. During this time, she spent semesters abroad as a visiting scholar at the University of Washington in Seattle (US), as well as a visiting professor at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver (CA) and at the University of Toronto (CA).

With her research, Karin Schwiter aims to contribute to a better understanding of how inequalities in labour markets are legitimised and maintained. She is particularly interested in precarious labour market segments beyond public attention, such as cleaning and care work in private households. In her most recent projects, she explores the implications of the digital transformation in the world of work. In this context, she and her research group are analysing, among other things, how digital employment platforms change the working and living realities of platform employees.

Karin Schwiter has received several awards for her research. In 2012, she received the Area Prize of the Royal Geographic Society for the best scientific article by a young researcher. In 2016, the President of the Swiss Confederation, Johann Schneider-Amman, presented her research group with the Swiss Prize for Education Research, worth 25,000 Swiss francs.