The Five-Dimensional Space of the Futures of Work: A View to 2030

Erran Carmel, Steve Sawyer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

We advance a structured view of the Futures of Work (FoW) using a futurist’s lens to advance two goals: advancing core dimensions to the FoW while outlining the Futurist’s approach to considering possible futures. Professional futurists point out that they do not predict the future, but rather, build a number of futures – in plural. These views of the futures are presented as scenarios to help decision makers consider alternatives and better understand interactions among the planning dimensions. The scenarios that drive planning are constructed by drawing on characteristics or dimensions that will shape our futures. It is these dimensions that we present here. We offer five foundational dimensions for the FoW, articulating them as opposing perspectives to frame the issue: (1) Virtuality versus Compressed working arrangements; (2) Atomistic work versus Holistic work; (3) Algorithmic versus Human decision-making; (4) Neoliberal capitalism versus Safety-net capitalism; (5) Übermensch versus Nihilists. We use these dimensions to provide scenarios to illustrate their use. We conclude by reflecting on the shock of the 2020 pandemic and the roles of firm size relative to the futures of work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Future of Digital Work
Subtitle of host publicationThe Challenge of Inequality - IFIP WG 8.2, 9.1, 9.4 Joint Working Conference, IFIPJWC 2020, Proceedings
EditorsRajendra K. Bandi, Ranjini C. R., Stefan Klein, Shirin Madon, Eric Monteiro
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Pages295-309
Number of pages15
ISBN (Print)9783030646967
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020
EventIFIP WG 8.2, 9.1, 9.4 Joint Working Conference on the Future of Digital Work: The Challenge of Inequality, IFIPJWC 2020 - Hyderabad, India
Duration: Dec 10 2020Dec 11 2020

Publication series

NameIFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology
Volume601
ISSN (Print)1868-4238
ISSN (Electronic)1868-422X

Conference

ConferenceIFIP WG 8.2, 9.1, 9.4 Joint Working Conference on the Future of Digital Work: The Challenge of Inequality, IFIPJWC 2020
CountryIndia
CityHyderabad
Period12/10/2012/11/20

Keywords

  • Automation
  • Foresight
  • Future of work
  • Labor
  • Markets
  • Planning
  • Scenarios

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems and Management

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