The impact of changing technology on employment is one of the biggest challenges societies will face in the 21st Century. While technological change is not new and there is no consensus among analysts about the ways in which current developments will impact on particular jobs and occupations, there is general agreement that robots, advanced AI and new employment platforms are significantly changing the nature of work and will continue to do so into the future. These major transformations offer opportunities for individuals and companies but also major social risks, including increased precarity, unequal wealth and associated economic insecurity.
Paula McDonald co-hosted with Dr Michelle Brady and Professors Gillian Whitehouse and Greg Marston from UQ the Social Impacts of the New Economy Symposium in June. The event brought together major national and international social researchers from the UK, US and Sweden to systematically examine how employment rights, risks and rewards are being redistributed and to reflect on the most appropriate systems of social support to protect against new and emerging risks.