Wednesday, 01.03.2017

Work 4.0 in the Digital Society

FES London and IPPR hosted a workshop on the transformation of the labour markets fuelled by digitisation and automation.

Policy-makers and experts from Germany and the UK came together to discuss policy ideas that can help shaping the new world of work in a participatory way.

The audience heard from Yasmin Fahimi, State Secretary in the German Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs, about the results of the government’s recently published whitepaper “Work 4.0” that seeks to address some of the key challenges posed by digitisation, automation, globalisation and demographic change. Discussed ideas are for example a ‘work insurance’ that allows people to take out time for re-training and upskilling throughout their career. The whitepaper also acknowledges that a new balance between flexibility and security will have to be found in the new world of work and lays out reforms of working-time arrangements.

Tom Watson MP, Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and Co-Chair of the Future of Work Commission responded with an outline of the evidence-gathering that the Commission has undertaken and the policy-ideas they are discussing. This was followed by a debate among all participants who showed great interest in the topic.