Examining ‘dirty work’ using an analysis of place and territorial stigma: low-income communities and the home credit sector

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  • 1 Newcastle University Business School, , UK
  • | 2 Leeds University Business School, , UK
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Based on data from over 70 interviews with people working in the home credit industry, this article makes a unique contribution to knowledge about work in sub-prime financial services. The article demonstrates how extant positions constructing home credit agents as ‘dirty workers’ are to some extent misleading, omitting analysis of the place(s) in which such work is enacted. Home credit has been established in disadvantaged, stigmatised communities for decades and is central to the history and geography of many working-class territories. Drawing on theory surrounding place and territorial stigma, this article considers the complicated relationship between the conflicting feelings of taint and value held by home credit workers, thus contributing to a more nuanced and contextually aware understanding of ‘dirty work’. Moreover, by exploring the value of home credit agents to their borrowers, it is possible to gain insights as to how to better structure financial support in low-income communities.

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  • 1 Newcastle University Business School, , UK
  • | 2 Leeds University Business School, , UK

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