What is the event about?
The core message is that the way we work is changing forever. If you believe this is true, then how do we create a future that is sustainable and equitable for everyone. We’re exploring the future of work in the context of the many things that are changing. The economics of employment, the impact of technology (automation, AI, robotics, gig economy platforms -Uber, Deliveroo, future jobs, changing nature of employer/employee relations,existing and future social safety nets. How do we design a future that’s fair to all parties. The change we’re seeing has far reaching consequences not just for employment but also for investors, startups ‘grown-up’ companies, policy makers, educators and society in general.
What are you hoping to achieve?
This is a design jam and being run as a open space. Whoever shows up is the right people, whatever they talk about is the right thing. However given the attendees who have registered so far I hope we will get some real tangible things produced and hacked together, with some protoyped working ‘solutions’. This is part of an overall initiative to grow awareness about what’s changing and understanding our ability to influence aspects of these unknown futures. The dystopic future looks quite bleak and scary – mass unemployment, massive social inequailty, conflict both local and global. While it’s easy to zone in on the downside we need to explore this whole space both the postive and the negative. There are jams running in US, Ireland, Italy, Brazil, Spain, Finland. This is the beginning of a process of exploration and I truly have no idea where it’s going but I’m hoping we can hack some positive solutions on the day.
— IFTF (@iftf) November 30, 2016
What are your thoughts on this area? What are you excited about?
I’ve been a user of UpWork and other freelancing platfroms, an Uber customer. I’m fascinated by the emergence of platforms Amazon, AirBnB, Uber etc. There is a business theory called aggregation theory which is seeking to describe some of the impacts of the internet on business and organization. The essence is the the power is moving and consolidating into platforms that will dominate certain markets AirBnB (accommodation), Uber(transport), Amazon(commerce) etc. This theory is completely at odds with how other organisation are currently configured, operated and valued.
We’ve seen early signals e.g. issues with Uber and access to markets (Austin Tx) both from a regulatory and an employment law perspective. I believe that this will play out in very many more industries and with much friction. As it does the nature of work, employment, economics & value will change. Policy makers will always be catching up in the face of the pace of innovation. The Design Jam is intended to engage people who are interested in designing a way forward where we can benefit from the upside while managing the downside. As stakeholders in this system we have an obligation to understand where it’s going and try to design better futures. In addition to the emergence of platforms we also have key technologies that will be disruptive. Specialised AI will impact the ‘white-collar’ professions of law and accounting, it will also disrupt the transport industry with the emergence of autonomous vehicles. Robotics, modular & additive manufacturing techniques will impact traditional manufacturing industries, supply chain organizations etc. The jobs of yesterday may not be the jobs of tomorrow. None of these changes are inherently good or bad but as we look to the future we can tell stories about how the world will change and begin to navigate the uncertainty.
Where can people find out more?
https://workablefutures.org/publications/reports/ Reports & Opinion
You can register for the event on 16th December in DCU Institute of Education St Patricks Campus Drumcondra here This is a free event and open to all. If you are interested in exploring, hacking and prototyping.