FEATURE24 September 2018

Job of the future

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Features Impact Innovations Trends UK

Jobs are the crux of our economic and social lives, but automation is disrupting employment. A report from Nesta models the skills and occupations that will be needed in the future. By Jane Bainbridge

Job of the future

What will work look like in 15 years’ time? A dominant narrative is one of jobs being taken over by robots and lost to automation, leaving swathes of the workforce without the right skills, stranded in unemployment.

Lists are published frequently, showing which jobs are future-proofed and those professions are most ‘at risk’. Invariably, there’s a common, negative thread – focusing on all that will be lost, and pondering how society might cope with hordes of people devoid of purpose and earning power. These studies often exist in isolation and rarely look at the effect of automation on job creation, failing to consider macro trends such as globalisation, ageing and other impacts on the economy.

Innovation foundation Nesta decided to approach the future of work from a slightly different tangent for its Future of Skills: Employment in 2030 report. It used a “novel and comprehensive method” to map how employment is likely to change, and the implications ...