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ERIC Number: ED447339
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Oct
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Future of Work: Insights, Views, Prospects. Basis-Info: Social Policy. IN Press.
Bechtel, Michael
Young people must prepare themselves for lifelong learning and frequent job changes. Optimists predict a new world of work with many creative, interesting, satisfying jobs; pessimists believe society will finally run out of work and foresee unemployment and social downgrading for a majority of people. There are indications at present of both scenarios. What seems certain is that only highly qualified and flexible workers will be eligible for the new economy. Even the service sector, which many hoped would provide more jobs, is downsizing its workforce. The character and organization of work is changing. By as early as the end of this decade, four-fifths of all work will rely on information. Rediscovery of the human factor, the debate on new management concepts with flatter hierarchies, more openness, self-responsibility, and participation are dictated by new economic realities in which the evolution in information technology plays the key role. Networks will define the working society of the future. Electronically-linked freelance providers can work in flexible networks to produce and sell goods and services. When a commission has been completed after a day, month, or year, the network dissolves itself. Sociologists and economists are thinking about a "third sector" outside of paid labor in which honorary or civic work, barter groups, charitable services, neighborliness, and the 'grey' economy all play a part. Questions about how (or whether) civic work should be paid, who should do it, and whether people on social assistance and the jobless can be obliged to participate show that much about this new approach is still unclear. (YLB)
Inter Nationes, Kennedyallee 91-103, D-53175 Bonn, Germany. Tel: 02 28 / 88 00; Fax: 02 28 / 88 04 57; Web site:
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Translations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Inter Nationes, Bonn (Germany).
Identifiers - Location: Germany