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The Work of the Future


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Table of Contents

Foreword by Robert M. Solow VII
Part I
1 Introduction 3
2 Labor Markets and Growth 11
3 Technologies and Innovation 39
Part II
4 Education and Training: Pathways to Better Jobs 79
5 Job Quality 101
6 Institutions for Innovation 121
7 Conclusions and Policy Directions 135
Acknowledgments 143
Notes 145
MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Research Briefs 163
MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future 165
Index 169

About the Author

David Autor is Ford Professor in the MIT Department of Economics. David A. Mindell is Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Dibner Professor of the History of Engineering and Manufacturing at MIT and founder and CEO of Humatics Corporation. Autor and Mindell were Cochairs of the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future. Elisabeth Reynolds is Special Assistant to the President for Manufacturing and Economic Development at the National Economic Council and and was Executive Director of the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future.


"A timely book."
-the Wall Street Journal

"The authors push back on the notion that technological advances will lead to the elimination of countless jobs in the future.Technological change, they emphasize, takes time to unfold and creates new job opportunities even while destroying old ones.In fact, public policy has been more important than technology in shaping labor-market outcomes, specifically for less skilled workers without college degrees. Although all advanced economies have experienced technological change, the United States has seen a sharper divergence between productivity and wages, a more dramatic decline in labor's share of national income, and a more pronounced rise in poorly compensated jobs, all as a result of policy, not technology.These economic trends and their social and political consequences, the authors argue, can be reversed by an increase in the federal minimum wage, which would spur employers to take steps to boost the productivity of low-paid workers; by legal changes that enhance the ability of workers to organize and represent themselves collectively."
-Foreign Affairs

"The book provides a valuable catalog of specific policy initiatives that could make a difference."
-Charter News

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