Labour

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    What happens to people’s careers when demand for their occupations declines?

What happens to people’s careers when demand for their occupations declines?

Technological change facilitates long run growth, but labour-replacing technologies are often perceived as a threat to the livelihood of workers. The recent wave of technologies is no longer confined to replacing routine workers such as machine operative and clerical workers: it could well reduce the employment of, among others, drivers, lawyers, and even fashion designers. Since more occupations are […]

The resegregation of the American workplace

The United States struggles with a long history of racial employment segregation. Exclusionary hiring based on race was only banned in 1964; enforcement gained teeth after the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) set to work in the late 1960s and early 1970s. We know that segregation in employment declined significantly through the early 1980s. Since then, though, progress seems […]

June 15th, 2019|Labour|0 Comments|
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    Why are women who earn slightly more than their husbands hard to find?

Why are women who earn slightly more than their husbands hard to find?

It is well known that on average women tend to earn less than their husbands. A less known fact is that there are particularly few couples in which women earn just a bit more than their husbands relatively to what one would expect — given the number of couples in which women earn just a bit less than their […]

June 10th, 2019|Economics, Labour|0 Comments|
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    Will a person’s employment status affect their partner’s market participation?

Will a person’s employment status affect their partner’s market participation?

When one loses a job or is unemployed for a period, there are several options to mitigate the loss or lower income, such as borrowing, delaying consumption of certain goods and services and relying on social benefits. Living together with others presents a unique opportunity to insure against such adverse income shocks. When one is unemployed, another household member […]

June 5th, 2019|Labour|0 Comments|
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    ‘Human plus artificial’ intelligence: the future of work in the investment industry

‘Human plus artificial’ intelligence: the future of work in the investment industry

What is the future of work in the investment industry? How do we, as providers of human capital prepare for the evolution of this profession? What does it mean for employers seeking to engage and motivate staff over the long term?

It is widely accepted that, like most other industries, the financial services industry is in a state of flux. […]

Protest-oriented unionism seems to be receding in France

With its social history punctuated by crippling national strikes, ‘bossnapping’ incidents, and more recently by the gilets jaunes protests, France is renowned for its population’s propensity to protest. As such, it has been recognised as a country whose unions hold a great amount of power in regulating the country’s employment system.

Yet it has been argued that France’s reputation as a […]

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    Exploring the debate on the future of work: the end of management?

Exploring the debate on the future of work: the end of management?

From a series of classroom discussions at Paris-Dauphine University focused on the transformation of work, we were able to identify three key trends.

The first striking point is the inflation of words, fashionable concepts, ideas and debates around the transformation of work (especially the keyword and hashtag #futureofwork and the strange absence of the keyword #futureofmanagement). Interest in the future […]

‘We are ready to try a four-day working week’

Right now a general sense of uncertainty is sweeping the nation. Brexit, an obesity epidemic, the NHS at breaking point, global warming and unrealistic house prices are just some of the hurdles Britain currently faces. You only have to turn on the news to feel some major pangs of anxiety. The extreme level of chaos in our outer world […]

March 22nd, 2019|CEOs, Labour|1 Comment|
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    Working in the ‘platform economy’: what is it really like?

Working in the ‘platform economy’: what is it really like?

Isn’t the ‘platform’ economy wonderful? Uber. Deliveroo. Convenience and low prices for customers. Really, what’s not to like? But what do platform workers themselves think about what they do? Digital ‘platforms’ broker work to freelancers in an online marketplace for talent. Jobs in these new, mostly service, industries offer freedom and flexible working conditions. Many workers value this as […]

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    The challenge of dealing with ‘double disruption’: Brexit and technology

The challenge of dealing with ‘double disruption’: Brexit and technology

Our work at the Institute for the Future of Work (IFOW) has been focusing on two major forces of disruption that the UK economy is experiencing. The first, Brexit, will involve a sharp change in the structure of economic activity. Membership of the European Union has shaped the British model of capitalism and the structure, and operation, of core industrial […]

Can millennials save the labour movement?

Millennials – born between 1980 and 2000 – are disproportionately employed in low skill occupations, with nonstandard employment arrangements, and in nonunionised workplaces. Their working conditions in general tend to be worse in comparison to older generations. They are also less likely than older workers to be union members even though they may have a more favourable view of […]

December 19th, 2018|Labour|2 Comments|

Are blue-collar jobs turning white?

Manual jobs in European manufacturing are being transformed, as blue-collar workers take on more intellectual tasks. This is a consequence of the increasing use of digital tools and the growing importance of quality control in production. The severe losses of medium-paying jobs in the manufacturing sector during the economic crisis raised concerns about its future role and contribution to […]

October 18th, 2018|Future of Work|0 Comments|

Are freelancers a breed apart?

Amelia is a web designer. After graduating from ITC in Milan in 2013, she went through a series of precarious, underpaid, jobs in ITC firms until a friend of a friend commissioned her with the development of his firm’s website. It was then that she realised that being a freelancer could be more profitable and satisfying. Amelia now manages […]

October 10th, 2018|Future of Work|2 Comments|
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    Can your organisation benefit from embracing the open source way?

Can your organisation benefit from embracing the open source way?

A recent Forbes article indicates that corporate engagement with open source communities has grown to become a strategic imperative over the past couple of decades. An increasing number of companies are paying their employees to contribute to such communities. This is one manifestation of a broader growing trend toward closer collaboration between companies and open source communities. Well-recognised companies […]

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    The potential to automate low-wage jobs in the U.S. and its impact on workers

The potential to automate low-wage jobs in the U.S. and its impact on workers

The extent to which firms can substitute labour with technology is a longstanding question that has grown in policy importance as automation technology spreads to a larger range of jobs. In our forthcoming paper, we contribute to this important issue by quantifying the potential to automate low-wage jobs in the U.S. labour market and examining its impact on low-wage […]

We must challenge the centrality of paid work in our lives

Unemployed people tend to have significantly worse health and wellbeing compared to people in paid work. With hundreds of empirical studies, this is one of the most persistent findings in social science research and holds across time and place.

In trying to explain the impact of unemployment on health, researchers have often been drawn to the social psychologist Marie Jahoda’s influential theory. […]

July 21st, 2018|Labour|2 Comments|

The future of work and how we can change it

If there is one overriding narrative is that the future of work consists of more insecure, poor quality and low wage work and/or no jobs at all as robots, AI and automation replace human beings. These narratives are wrong, at least in the foreseeable future, which I arbitrarily put at 20 years. Futurologists and science fiction writers are better […]

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    Following in the parents’ footsteps: nepotism or transfer of skills?

Following in the parents’ footsteps: nepotism or transfer of skills?

The observed low rate of social mobility in several contemporary societies is a matter of a lively debate. Is it the unavoidable consequence of the transmission (genetic or not) of skills and abilities? Or is it mostly the result of an unfair society that prevents an efficient allocation of talents and favours children with better social connections?

Liberal professions such […]

July 12th, 2018|Labour|0 Comments|
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    Robots, robots everywhere. What does it mean for developing countries?

Robots, robots everywhere. What does it mean for developing countries?

Stunning technological advances in robotics and artificial intelligence are being reported virtually on a daily basis: from the versatile mobile robots in agriculture and manufacturing jeans to autonomous vehicles and 3D-printed buildings.

In fact, the International Federation of Robotics estimates that next year the stock of industrial robots will grow by more than 250,000 units per year concentrated in production […]

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    Misfit: what do you do when you can’t be yourself at work?

Misfit: what do you do when you can’t be yourself at work?

The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them.  —   Steve Jobs
Most of us, like Steve Jobs, have come […]