What are the varieties of cash-in-hand work? Who undertakes these different forms of cash-in-hand work and why do they do it? Where is such work to be found? And what should government do? This book shows that throughout the advanced economies, cash-in-hand work is changing. As societies become more commodified, cash payments are becoming more common whenever people do favours for friends, neighbours and kin. The result is that cash-in-hand economies are now composed of not only an underground sector (work akin to formal employment conducted for profit-motivated purposes), but also a hidden economy of favours more akin to mutual aid. The outcome is a call for a radical rethink of whether seeking its eradication through tougher regulations is always appropriate. Re-reading both forms of cash-in-hand work as assets rather than obstacles to development, recommendations are made that harness their positive attributes and eradicate their more negative consequences.

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