MIT launches Task Force on the Work of the Future

On February 27, 2018 MIT launched a Task Force on the Work of the Future. The Institute-wide effort is aimed at understanding and sculpting the evolution of employment and work during an age of innovation.

In an announcement to the MIT community, President L. Rafael Reif said, "In profound and pervasive ways, the technologies humans invent in the present will set the terms of our shared future. The global race to advance those technologies will help determine the nature of society itself. Through the work of the task force, we hope to help the nation and the world reflect on what kind of society we aspire to - and come together to make it real."

Jason Jackson, Assistant Professor of Political Economy and Urban Planning at DUSP, is a task force member charged with shaping technology to ensure we create a better world for all. Speaking to his role, Jackson noted, "The Task Force on the Work of the Future provides an exciting opportunity to work with colleagues from across MIT on an issue of great global importance. Rapid technological change offers intriguing opportunities for new modes of economic governance but can also create winners and losers, raising deep concerns about persistent inequality and threatening hopes of an egalitarian future. I am particularly keen on the contribution we might make towards understanding how societal struggles will shape the distributional effects of these technological advances, particularly given the reality that labor markets around the world are heavily stratified by pervasive social structures such as race, class, gender and migration status."

Jackson's research examines the relationship between states and markets - seeking to understand how social and political institutions shape markets and economic outcomes. Jackson's applied research on the rise of the platform economy and the transformation of urban mobility markets position him as an ideal member of the task force.

DUSP will also be represented by Elisabeth Reynolds, Lecturer of Innovation and Economic Development and the Executive Director of the task force. Reynolds focuses on issues related to systems of innovation, regional economic development and industrial competitiveness. She leads the MIT Industrial Performance Center examining how entrepreneurial firms scale technologies, advancements in manufacturing, and how globalization impacts the biomanufacturing industry.

To learn more about the Work of the Future Task Force, read Peter Dizikes's MIT News Story here.

To learn more about Jason Jackson's research and teaching, click here. To learn more about Elisbeth Reynolds and the Industrial Performance Center, click here.


Image credit: Melanie Gonick via MIT News