Everyone is talking about the future of work, but rarely listening to the people whose futures are on the line. We’re interrupting this conversation with a different take on the digital economy, inequality, climate change, public interest journalism, and innovation — one that puts workers and their realities at the centre.
Jim Stanford, economist and Director of the Centre for Future Work, kicked off the PowerShare project with a preview of his new research paper, 10 Ways the COVID-19 Pandemic Must Change Work for Good. The online meetup included a short presentation by Jim followed by a stimulating conversation with Sara Mojtehedzadeh, the Toronto Star’s Work and Wealth reporter and host of the Hustled podcast. It was hosted by Atkinson’s Colette Murphy, and included Shannon Daub, the British Columbia Director of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
PowerShare is a partnership between the Centre for Future Work, the Atkinson Foundation, and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. This project aims to broaden the popular discourse about the future of work to more fully consider issues of worker voice, representation, and power.
For My Labour Our Future, 100 decent work activists and advocates gathered in Montréal — a city with deep roots in the decent work movement and the home of the International Labour Organization during World War II. They celebrated the ILO’s centenary and talked about the deep narratives that move people to fight for or against decent work from generation to generation.
Check out these contributions from participants to the dialogue. Jim Stanford from the Centre for Future Work at the Australia Institute offered these five contrarian insights in response to a federal government paper issued in June 2019. Chuka Ejeckam, Armine Yalnizyan, and Ted Howard reflected on why they’re in this fight for decent work.
Carmen Rojas, Executive Director of The Workers Lab, joined the Toronto Star’s Work and Wealth reporter Sara Mojtehedzadeh for a conversation a week after the inauguration of the US. President. Carmen shared her perspective on what a Trump presidency means for philanthropy and organizing efforts on decent work south of the border.
The Workers Lab is based in Oakland, California. The Lab combines innovation incubation/acceleration, technical assistance, and startup capital for entrepreneurs who are “changing the rules” about work and transforming the lives of workers.
The Atkinson Foundation and the Broadbent Institute co-hosted a public lecture by award-winning economist Mariana Mazzucato. Mazzucato, author of The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public vs. Private Sector Myths. She is the Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London (UCL), and Director of UCL’s Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose. She won the New Statesmen/Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI) Prize in Political Economy for her work on the entrepreneurial state and smart growth.
We collaborated on this background paper challenging Canadian perceptions of public investment in innovation and inspired by Mazzucato’s work.