This project examines the effects of technological change on work and labour markets, focusing on the economic and social implications in Newfoundland and Labrador (NL). We are particularly interested in investigating opportunities, barriers, and equity in a time of technological and economic transformation. Rapid technological advancements make it easier and more cost-effective to replace human labour with machines. At the same time, there is an increasing need for advanced technological capabilities in many occupations. Furthermore, as the provincial economy has traditionally been heavily reliant on resource-based industries (including Oil and Gas), the labour market changes accompanying a possible transition to renewable energy industries come with additional challenges in terms of career transitions, training, reskilling, and possibly upskilling.
In this project, we seek to balance the interests of multiple stakeholders, including industry, employers, workers, unions, and government. This way, we aim to examine the needs of those employing people and those working or looking for work. We do this with an equity lens with the hope of ensuring that the technological transformation of work does not disproportionally disadvantage any population or group.
• Our goal is to mobilize knowledge, expertise, and resources to support the public good: social, health, economic, cultural, and environmental. Mobilizing academic knowledge and expertise will increase the understanding the public and key stakeholders have of the issues related to technology and the future of work, as well as the related equity issues.
• In addition to mobilizing knowledge and expertise for the social and economic public good, the project aims to specifically address the issues related to innovation and economic diversification in NL. The project’s equity focus serves to ensure that technological innovation benefits all members of society and that these benefits are distributed equitably, such as by ensuring that it is not only those already advantaged (in terms of education and level of technological training) that benefit.
• This collaborative project is based on the premise that dialogue among interested and key stakeholders will lead to better-informed decisions and policies and more sustainable outcomes. For this reason, a key component of the project is to facilitate an ongoing public dialogue between key stakeholders. This dialogue will both be informed by and contribute to this project’s research. To facilitate this dialogue, we will partner with several organizations representative of key stakeholder groups, primarily government, labour, and industry.