Larissa Petrucci, MS, is a Research Assistant at the Labor Education and Research Center and Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of Oregon. Her her research and teaching specialities are in Labor and Labor Movements, Feminist Theory, Organizations, Occupations, and Work, and Qualitative Research Methods. She has published research on the development of postfeminist communities as a means to address institutional sexism, and has co-authored research exploring workers’ responses to unpredictable scheduling practices and institutional communication on sexual violence. She has also co-authored reports on Oregon’s Fair Work Week Legislation, and is currently preparing a manuscript on a co-authored longitudinal research project assessing the impacts of COVID-19 on low-wage service workers’ experiences in Oregon.
In 2020 Larissa was awarded the Wasby-Johnson Dissertation Fellowship for her dissertation research, “Taylored Flexibility: Agile, Capitalism, and the Software Labor Process,” which draws upon in-depth interviews with software workers and managers who use a project management methodology called Agile to raise questions about the nature of knowledge-based work in the Digital Economy. This research shows that Agile, an increasingly popular way to organize software work, draws upon management methodologies in automobile industries, most notably lean production processes used at Toyota. She argues that the way software work is organized is best understood as a strategy she calls ‘Taylored Flexibility’: a paradoxical attempt to obtain control and predictability over the unexpected and contingent nature of software development. This study’s analysis of the managerial methods used to produce software shows continuities between manual and knowledge-based labor, raising questions about the role of knowledge and technology in the relationship between capital and labor in the 21st century’s Digital Economy.
Beyond her research, Larissa is passionate and energetic instructor in sociology, and received the Charles W. Hunt Excellence in Teaching Award in 2019. She has taught online and in-person courses on Sociological Research Methods, American Society, and Work and Occupations, and designed an upper-division course titled Transformations in the Labor Process.
Larissa is also a dedicated union activist, serving in a number of leadership roles in the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation (GTFF) including the 2019 Bargaining Committee.