Friday, September 14, 2012

Changes in the nature of work

I have started to read 'Speaking to each other ... about society' by Richard Hoggart and he has a very interesting essay entitled 'Changes in working class life'. Written in 1960, the essay describes how the mills and factories of northern England are starting to suffer and work is becoming more specialised. I find it quite striking that 50 years later after all the changes that have happened we are still surprised when factories close and work is moved on across the globe.

Our education system is still struggling to cope with a system of work where skilled workers are at a premium. Even a skilled workforce is not immune to global change. 

I find it strange that no one is willing to forecast into the future that there will not be a place for unskilled work. Retail / service jobs are going to be reduced to a minimum. How are we going to cope?

I would like to see more emphasis on work that is primarily creative, work that cannot be reproduced elsewhere at a lower cost. This does not mean I am neglecting skilled work but we need to be creative with our skilled workers, we need to be strategic with the focus in our education system.

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