As Jamie Merisotis, the president and CEO of Lumina Foundation, argues in Human Work In the Age of Smart Machines, we can—and must—rise to this challenge by preparing to work alongside smart machines doing that which only humans can: thinking critically, reasoning ethically, interacting interpersonally, and serving others with empathy.
In Human Work, Merisotis, author of the award-winning 2015 book America Needs Talent, offers a roadmap for the large-scale, radical changes we must make in order to find abundant and meaningful work in the 21st century. His vision centers on developing our unique capabilities as humans through a lifetime of learning opportunities that are easy to navigate, deliver fair results, and offer a broad range of credentials—from college degrees to occupational certifications. By shifting long-held ideas about how the workforce should function and expanding our concept of work, he argues that we can harness the population’s potential, encourage a deeper sense of community, and erase a centuries-long system of inequality.
As the headlines blink red, now is the time to redesign education, training, and the workplace as a whole. Yes, many jobs will be lost to technology, but if we promote people’s deeper potential, engaging human work will always be available.
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About the Author
Merisotis is a frequent media commentator and contributor. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, National Journal, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Politico, Roll Call, Washington Monthly, and other publications.
His work includes experience as an adviser and consultant in southern Africa, the former Soviet Union, Europe, and other parts of the world. A respected analyst and innovator, Merisotis is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. Merisotis serves as chairman of the Council on Foundations in Washington, D.C., and past chairman of The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, the world’s largest museum for children. He also serves on the boards of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership and the United Kingdom–based European Access Network. He lives with his wife Colleen O’Brien and their children, Benjamin and Elizabeth, in Indianapolis.
Table of Contents
1 How Work Is Being Transformed 1
2 The Work Only Humans Can Do 31
3 Preparing for the Work of the Future 59
4 Credentials for Human Work 89
5 Earning and Learning 109
6 Human Work in a Democratic Society 135
About the Author 201