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A podcast about faith, work, theology, and economics

April 23, 2018

Ergasia Digest #7 - 23.4.18

In this week's episode: the difficulty of accessing parental leave; artists asked to work for free; the "lost" generation of those born after 1973; the push to criminalise "wage theft"; and the fallout from the Financial Services Royal Commission. What are the theological implications of these realities -how do they speak of our understanding of justice, and of the distortions of "partiality".


Lufkin, Bryan "Dealing With Clients Who Expect You To Work For Free", located at http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20180411-dealing-with-clients-who-expect-you-to-work-for-free

Hoffman,  Michael "Japan faces up to the prospect of losing a middle class war", located at https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/04/14/national/media-national/japan-faces-prospect-losing-middle-class-war/#.WtQKOkxuJfw

McCrostie, James "Court cases shine a light on Japan's problem with paternity leave" located at https://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/2018/01/28/issues/court-cases-shine-light-japans-problem-paternity-leave/#.WtQM3UxuJfw

Schneiders, Ben and Millar, Royce "Push to jail employers for up to 10 years for 'wage theft'", located at https://www.theage.com.au/politics/victoria/push-to-jail-employers-for-up-to-10-years-for-wage-theft-20180407-p4z8ap.html

Author Unknown "Banking royal commission revelations 'worse than I thought', says former ACCC boss" located at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-20/banking-royal-commission-allan-fells-accc-reaction/9679182

Carey, Alexis "Financial Services Royal Commission begins public hearings" located at http://www.news.com.au/finance/business/banking/financial-services-royal-commission-begins-public-hearings/news-story/070535cef877ff7c27cc82faf3dc3350

Yaxley, Louise "Malcolm Turnbull conceeds banking royal commission should have been called sooner", located at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-23/banks-royal-commission-shouldve-been-called-sooner-turnbull-says/9686596

March 18, 2018

Ergasia Digest #6 - 18.3.18

In this edition of Ergasia Digest, we examine ongoing moves in the US to destroy the ability of labour unions to collectively bargain, the consequences of so-called "crypto-colonialism", the state of Australian workplace culture, and what happens when unions and governments support workplace agreements that have potentially negative human rights implications. Through it all, we'll pose the question: whose interest is being served - the network of human digniy Christianity understands as covenantal relationship, or the dehumanising powers of political and institutional prerogative?


Irvine, Jessica, "'Shocking' levels of sexual harassment at work, study reveals", located at https://www.theage.com.au/business/careers/shocking-levels-of-sexual-harassment-at-work-study-reveals-20180305-p4z2wn.html

Yarovaya, Larisa and Lucey, Brian "Should Bitcoin be used to help countries hit by disaster?" located at http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20180305-should-bitcoin-be-used-to-help-countries-hit-by-disaster

McNicholas, Celine; Mokhiber, Zane; and von Wilpert, Marni "Janus and fair share fees: The organizations financing the attack on unions’ ability to represent workers" located at http://www.epi.org/publication/janus-and-fair-share-fees-the-organizations-financing-the-attack-on-unions-ability-to-represent-workers/

Hinchliffe, Joe "Victorian government calls for biggest minimum wage boost since 2010" located at https://www.theage.com.au/politics/victoria/victorian-government-calls-for-biggest-minimum-wage-boost-since-2010-20180311-p4z3ui.html

McKenzie, Nick; Tomazin, Farrah; and Baker, Richard "The report the firefighters' union did not want you to see", located at https://www.theage.com.au/politics/victoria/the-report-the-firefighters-union-did-not-want-you-to-see-20180305-p4z2xy.html

Olekains, Mara "How to ask for a pay rise" located at https://theconversation.com/how-to-ask-for-a-pay-rise-797560

March 4, 2018

Ergasia Digest #5 - 4.3.18

Welcome to Ergasia Digest #5. In this episode, we examine the effect of the Trump administration's corporate tax cuts, reveal the potential impact of proposed labour reforms in Japan, and note the ongoing efforts by governments in the Asia-Pacific region to revive the Trans-Pacific Partnership. And through it all, ask the question: what do Christ's teachings call Christians to do in response to these developments?


Author Unknown, "Abe apologizes again after 117 flaws found in labor study", located at http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201802230046.html

Author Unknown, "Billionaire reports record quarterly and annual profit for Berkshire Hathaway, in large part due to Congress’s tax code changes", located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/feb/24/warren-buffett-says-republican-tax-cut-delivered-29bn-to-his-company

Wearden, Graeme and Elliott, Larry "Reforms may threaten recovery and lead to bigger US budget deficit, says Christine Lagarde", located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/jan/26/imf-chief-warns-trumps-tax-cuts-could-destabilise-global-economy

Author Unknown, "Revised TPP faces obstacles on road to ratification", located at https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/International-Relations/Revised-TPP-faces-obstacles-on-road-to-ratification

Author Unknown, "Vatican magazine denounces nuns’ servitude", located at http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0004278870

Author Unknown, "Abe to remove controversial plan", located at http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0004275653

Author Unknown, "Japanese reporter died after 159 hours of overtime", located at https://tribune.com.pk/story/1524391/japanese-reporter-died-159-hours-overtime/


February 24, 2018

Ergasia Digest #4 - 24.2.18

Welcome to Ergasia Digest #4, the first roundup of news from the world of work, faith, theology, and economics for 2018. This week: what does a theology of work say about ideological blindness, and the responsibility of Christians when confronted by political and social policies that impact on the poor and the powerless in favour of the wealthy and the powerful.


Jones, Janelle and Zipperer, Ben "Unfulfilled promises: Amazon fulfillment centers do not generate broad-based employment growth", located at http://www.epi.org/publication/unfulfilled-promises-amazon-warehouses-do-not-generate-broad-based-employment-growth/

Hultgreen, Anna Kristina "What Call Centres Can Tell Us About Sexism", located at http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20180208-the-female-ghetto-of-workplaces

Eslake, Saul "Is Faster Profit Growth Essential For A Pick Up In Wages Growth?", located at https://theconversation.com/is-faster-profit-growth-essential-for-a-pick-up-in-wages-growth-83819

Butler, Sarah "Apocalypse Now For Britain's Retailers As Low Wages and the Web Cause Ruin", located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/feb/17/uk-retail-industry--gloom-high-street-shift-consumers

Blair, Hunter "The Trump administration’s infrastructure plan remains empty talk and will be paid for by cuts to programs that help working people", located at http://www.epi.org/blog/the-trump-administrations-infrastructure-plan-remains-empty-talk-and-will-be-paid-for-by-cuts-to-programs-that-help-working-people/


December 24, 2017

Ergasia Digest #3 - 24.12.17

Welcome to Ergasia Digest #3, a roundup of the news from the world of faith, work, economics and theology. This week: what happens when corporations and unions, or corporations and governments, conspire to promote their own self-interest instead of the interest of the wider community; and how does adherence to economic ideology and political expediency impact the poorest and most vulnerable workers in the community?


Schneiders, Ben and Millar, Royce “Secret Woolworths deal with Shoppies union cuts wages”. Located at http://www.theage.com.au/national/investigations/secret-woolworths-deal-with-shoppies-union-cuts-wages-20171216-h05t1p.html

Pegg, David “Paradise Papers prompt criminal complaint against Glencore”. Located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/dec/21/paradise-papers-prompt-criminal-complaint-against-glencore

Shierholz, Heidi; Cooper, David; and Wolfe, Julia “Employers would pocket $5.8 billion of workers’ tips under Trump administration’s proposed ‘tip stealing’ rule”. Located at http://www.epi.org/publication/employers-would-pocket-workers-tips-under-trump-administrations-proposed-tip-stealing-rule/

Jones, Janelle “18 states will increase their minimum wages on January 1, benefitting 4.5 million workers” http://www.epi.org/publication/18-states-will-increase-their-minimum-wages-on-january-1-benefitting-4-5-million-workers/

Author Unknown, “Loss of EU trade benefits could cost Cambodia $700m annually” Located at https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Loss-of-EU-trade-benefits-could-cost-Cambodia-700m-annually

December 21, 2017

Ergasia Digest #2 - 21.12.17

Welcome to Ergasia Digest #2, a roundup of the news from the world of faith, work, economics and theology. This week: the initial impacts of cutting penalty rates on employment opportunity and economic activity; the correlation (if any) between employment vacancies, employment rates, and wages growth; and productivity, human health, and hours of work.



Bagshaw, Erik “Penalty rate cut fails to stimulate jobs, survey shows”. Located at http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/penalty-rate-cut-fails-to-stimulate-jobs-survey-shows-20171213-h04csj.html

Elliott, Larry “Fall in employment rate spells end of UK jobs boom”. Locate at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/dec/13/fall-in-employment-rate-spells-end-of-uk-jobs-boom

Ferguson, Adele and Danckert, Sarah “'Don't speak out': franchise giant RFG warns against complaining publicly”. Located at http://www.theage.com.au/business/retail/dont-speak-out-franchise-giant-rfg-warns-against-complaining-publicly-20171209-h01y1i.html

Hutchens, Gareth “Penalty rate cuts followed by weakest consumer spending since 2008”. Located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/dec/12/penalty-rate-cuts-followed-by-weakest-consumer-spending-since-2008

Ruggeri, Amanda “The compelling case for working a lot less”. Located at http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20171204-the-compelling-case-for-working-a-lot-less

December 9, 2017

Ergasia Digest #1 - 9.12.17

Welcome to Ergasia Digest #1 - a weekly round-up of news from the world of faith, work, theology, and economics. This is a new initiative of the Ergasia podcast, bringing real news stories into contact with theological reflection, posing questions from the perspective of a Christian theology of work.



Martin, Peter  "Big firms including News Corp, Exxon and Chevron paid no tax in 2016, Tax Office says". Located at http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/big-firms-including-news-corp-exxon-and-chevron-paid-no-tax-in-2016-tax-office-says-20171208-h01kxq.html 

Kaine, Sarah and Josserand, Emmanuel "Amazon's track record may signal a change in Australian industrial relations". Located at https://theconversation.com/amazons-track-record-may-signal-a-change-in-australian-industrial-relations-88146 

Partington, Richard "Gig economy workers in UK risk missing out on £22,000 of pension." Located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/dec/07/gig-economy-workers-uk-missing-out-22200-status-workplace-pension

Butler, Sarah "Sports Direct and its staffing agencies paid workers £1m too little". Located at https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/dec/08/sports-direct-and-its-staffing-agencies-paid-workers-1m-too-little

Kawase, Tomoshizu "Japan's taxman tightens scrutiny on wealthy". Located at https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Economy/Japan-s-taxman-tightens-scrutiny-on-wealthy