Measuring the gig economy in Canada using administrative data

This study identifies gig workers based on characteristics of their work arrangements and how these are reported in tax data. It introduces a definition of gig work specific to the way work arrangements are reported in the Canadian tax system and estimates the size of the gig economy in Canada using administrative data. The share of gig workers among all workers rose from 5.5% in 2005 to 8.2% in 2016. Some of this increase coincided with the introduction and proliferation of online platforms. The analysis highlights gender differences in the trends and characteristics of gig workers. By linking administrative data to 2016 Census microdata, this study also examines educational and occupational differences in the prevalence of gig workers.

Jeon et al. (2019), Measuring the Gig Economy in Canada Using Administrative Data. Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series, 11F0019M No. 437.


  • Research publication, Secondary data
  • Canada
  • Yes
  • employment status, skills and employability, tasks, taxation, worker demographics
  • English
  • Statistics Canada (Research institute)
  • Qualitative research, Quantitative research
  • 2019
  • Open access
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