Techonomics: The Shifting Future of Work in Dynamic Times

“It’s difficult to predict how many jobs will be wiped out or changed thanks to artificial intelligence, but one thing we definitely know is that employment is changing,”

-Ellen Ruppel Shell

By Jason Middleton

It seems technology has been moving fast and breaking things for a long time now. Since the dot com crash, let’s call it year 2000, the labor market has been disrupted by automation;

So the human task has been to find a pathway to build good work in a globalized and digitalized world where middle class jobs are slipping away.

Call it robots or artificial intelligence, the job – the future of work – is being redefined on the fly. It’s like building an airplane while it’s in the air sometimes.

This week we have Ellen Ruppel Shell to talk about her new research and book, The Job: Work and Its Future in A Time of Radical Change.

Here are a few key points from Ruppel Shell’s multidisciplinary research:

  • Technology executives claim, and most experts accept, that there is a mismatch between the jobs needed and the training and education we are giving our students. In fact, that isn’t true. Training more engineers and software coders is not the answer.
  • Entrepreneurs and startups do NOT create a lot of jobs (legacy industries do).
  • And what about the impact of online commerce on brick-and-mortar operations. It’s estimated that every human on the Amazon payroll displaces two humans in traditional retail roles.


Have great weeks, everybody.

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