The Future of Work and Learning

Publication Type

This is an excerpt from an article written by Richard Florizone, president of Dalhousie University and Alex Usher, president of Higher Education Strategy Associates. It can be read in full at The Chronicle Herald

Students have headed back to campus this fall amidst increasing angst about the rise of the machines and the future of work.

With recent advances in technologies like robotics and artificial intelligence, what kind of jobs will our graduates face, and how can we best prepare them? The answers aren’t as obvious or as foreboding as recent headlines suggest.

In some ways we’ve been here before. At the start of the 20th century, agriculture accounted for more than 30 per cent of all jobs in Canada. Today, due to technological advances, agriculture represents less that two per cent of total employment. In the intervening years, millions of Canadians were educated and employed in new professions that could scarcely have been imagined a century ago.