IFTF + You
Workable Futures Initiative
Transforming work for the coming decade
IN THE MEDIA:
- U.S. Department of Labor Blog: Imagining a Bright Future of Work
- <re/code>: It's Not About Uber: Beyond the W-2 vs. 1099 Debate
- Harvard Business Review: Here’s How Managers Can Be Replaced by Software
- Computerworld: Think your management job is safe? Beware the 'iCEO'
- The Wall Street Journal: Can your CEO be automated?
We are pleased to announce the Workable Futures Initiative, a new project by the Institute for the Future (IFTF), with three key goals:
- Deepen public understanding of the new emerging work patterns;
- Catalyze development of Positive Work Platforms, i.e. platforms that maximize positive outcomes; and
- Meaningfully contribute to design of public policies that are in line with the new realities of work.
For many years, IFTF has been conducting leading-edge research on the Future of Work and Work Skills and has been widely recognized as a thought leader in the field. Our research leads us to believe that we are in the midst of a historic transformation in the nature of work and structure of jobs. A host of technologies—from automation to digital platforms for coordination of tasks such as Uber and Shyp—are transforming not just what people do to earn their livelihoods but, at a much deeper level, how we organize to create value. Completely new types of worker archetypes are emerging, among them micro-taskers, i.e. people signed up on multiple digital coordination platforms, such as Uber, Lyft, Gigwalk, MobileWorks, and many others, whose work experience does not involve stable 8-5 jobs but rather stitching together of series of tasks performed in flexible niches of time.
At the same time, companies such as Elance and LiveOps, using similar online coordination platforms, are able to assemble and coordinate teams “in the cloud” to provide sales and customer support, help with editorial work, conduct research, design and prototype products, and perform many other tasks and organizational functions. As a result, many workers in the US feel the impacts of global labor arbitrage more keenly than ever before.
We believe that the current transformation in work and organizational structures is one of the most important urgent issues for our society and policymakers to address if we are to maintain social cohesion and broad-based democratic system of governance.
A Call to Action
With the above in mind, IFTF’s Workable Futures Initiative will undertake several related, ongoing activities:
- Original Research aimed at understanding a diverse array of new work patterns and worker archetypes;
- Convenings to bring together key thought-leaders and innovators in the space to exchange ideas and together provide recommendations on new policies, regulations, and services needed to create a supportive ecosystem for new work;
- Prototyping Sessions to engage innovators from different domains in creating a new generation of Positive Platforms and a new Social Safety Net ecosystem that would ensure sustainable livelihoods for citizens.
The Honorable Gavin Newsom
Lieutenant Governor, State of California
Gavin Newsom has championed innovative public policies since entering office in 1997. As a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, then as mayor of San Francisco and now as Lieutenant Governor of California, Newsom has been a political visionary on issues of equality, the environment, homelessness and healthcare. Policies he has initiated and implemented have been duplicated in cities across the nation.
Michael M. Crow
President, Arizona State University
Michael is an academic leader and educator, designer of knowledge enterprises, and science and technology policy scholar. He has been the sixteenth president of Arizona State University since July 2002. He is guiding the transformation of ASU into one of the nation’s leading public metropolitan research universities, an institution combining academic excellence, inclusiveness, and societal impact—a model he terms the “New American University.”
Chief Technology & Strategy Officer (CTSO), Cisco
Padmasree is charged with aligning technology development and corporate strategy to enable Cisco to anticipate, shape, and lead major market transitions. She helps direct technology and operational innovation across the company and oversees strategic partnerships, mergers and acquisitions, the integration of new business models, the incubation of new technologies, and the cultivation of world-class technical talent.
Senior Vice President, People Operations, Google
Laszlo Bock leads Google's people function, responsible for attracting, developing, retaining, and delighting "Googlers." He believes that giving people freedom and supplementing our instincts with hard science are steps on the path to making work meaningful and people happy. During Bock's tenure, Google has been named the Best Company to Work For more than 30 times around the world and received over 100 awards as an employer of choice.
Vice President, Community and National Initiatives, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Carol joined Knight Foundation in 2013 as vice president of Community and National Initiatives, and is an expert on the development of cities. She was director of ArtPlace, a unique public-private collaboration to accelerate creative placemaking in communities across the United States. For seven years prior, Carol was president and CEO of CEOs for Cities.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Intuit
Brad was named Intuit's president and chief executive officer in January 2008, culminating a five-year rise through the company where he successfully led several of its major businesses. Intuit's mission is to improve its customers' financial lives so profoundly, they couldn't imagine going back to the old way. Its products and services simplify the business of life for more than 45 million consumers, small businesses and accounting professionals around the world.
Parminder K. Jassal
Executive Director, ACT Foundation
Parminder is Founding Executive Director of ACT Foundation, where she oversees the organization’s unique role as an operating foundation that both funds strategic investments and serves as an incubation partner to build and support a National Learning Economy. Dr. Jassal previously served as a program officer supporting postsecondary success for low-income young adults at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Senior Vice President and General Manager, Global Talent Solutions, Kelly Services, Inc.
Teresa is senior vice president and general manager of Global Talent Solutions for Kelly Services, Inc., a leader in workforce solutions. She oversees product and solution strategy, the professional, technical, and outsourcing and consulting practices globally, in addition to overseeing the global sales function and centralized delivery team.
Mary Kay Henry
President, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
Mary Kay Henry serves as International President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which unites 2 million workers in healthcare, public, and property services. She has devoted her life to helping North America's workers form unions and strengthen their voice at work about the quality of the goods and services they provide, and the quality of care they are able to deliver.
Chief Executive Officer, TechShop
Mark is CEO and co-founder of TechShop and a recognized leader in the global maker movement. Under his leadership, TechShop revenue grew 20-fold in five years and multiple new locations have opened across the US. Mark has held executive positions at firms including Kinko’s, Avery Dennison, and Health Net. In 2013, his book The Maker Movement Manifesto was released by McGraw-Hill Education.
President and CEO, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
Terri is President and CEO of W.L. Gore & Associates, a multi-billion dollar enterprise that employs more than 10,000 associates in 45 plants around the world. Gore specializes in fluoropolymer-based materials that are utilized in a wide array of high-value products, including GORE-TEX® fabric, medical devices, filtration and venting products and many other advanced technology solutions. Gore is well known for its unique management philosophy and culture.
As CEO of Upwork, the largest online freelancing marketplace, Stephane Kasriel is a leading tech executive helping to shape the future of work and expert on innovative workforce approaches -- especially building globally distributed teams. Previously, Stephane was Global Head of PayPal Consumer Products, Global Head of Mobile Business Development and Managing Director of PayPal France, held leadership roles at pioneering companies including Fireclick, Work4, and Zong, and was a founder of Fireclick and iFeelGoods.
Enterprise Leadership Team, W. L. Gore & Associates
Mary joined Gore in 1982. She leads the company’s global human resources team and is a member of the Enterprise Leadership Team, which guides Gore’s strategic direction and is responsible for the overall health and growth of the company. She earned her bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and her MBA from the University of Delaware.
Devin Fidler on the Future of Coordination and Work
IFTF is a recognized thought leader on the future of work, and Fast Company magazine named Institute for the future one of the five most innovative nonprofits developing responses to the changing world of work. We have tracked the intersection of technologies and work for decades, starting with the first studies of the uses of Arpanet (the predecessor of the Internet), and more recently, looking at impacts of collaboration technologies, new organizational forms, and changing workforce skills. We will build on our ongoing research to create a comprehensive and actionable set of tools to help organizations succeed in the rapidly changing world of work.
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