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Venture LaborWork and the Burden of Risk in Innovative Industries$
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Gina Neff

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780262017480

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262017480.001.0001

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Why Networks Failed

Why Networks Failed

Chapter:
(p.101) 4 Why Networks Failed
Source:
Venture Labor
Author(s):

Gina Neff

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262017480.003.0045

This chapter analyzes one of the resources that people used to support themselves in risky work. It explores the success and failure of the work that happened at the parties in Silicon Alley in terms of the impact on people’s careers and job security. Respondents that were interviewed considered their social networks to be their unemployment insurance, hedges for risky ventures and buffers for difficult times. The chapter shows that Silicon Alley workers said that attending industry events was crucial for their continued employability. The networking practices in Silicon Alley emphasize how workers themselves experienced the “work” of networking. Networking practices individualized and privatized economic uncertainty, and were important for encouraging workers to engage in entrepreneurial labor.

Keywords:   Silicon Alley, job security, social networks, employability, networking practices, economic uncertainty, entrepreneurial labor

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