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2 - The Future of Work & the Social Sector

This conversation took place January 29th, 2015. Transcript available here.

According to last August’s Labour Force Survey, Canada experienced the highest monthly increase in self-employment observed in the last 40 years, a rise of approximately 87,000 self-employed positions. Although this was a record high, it is reflective of a larger overall trend of increases in the country’s ‘do it yourself’ economy that we have seen in recent years. Some interpret this trend as a symptom of troubling economic times, signifying that job opportunities are scarce and more initiative is needed for people to find ways of supporting themselves. However, this can also be related to the growing possibilities and opportunities presented to younger generations through Web 2.0 technologies, increased access to ‘big data’ through the worldwide Internet, and enhanced ability to communicate and work remotely.

Our modern day tools have allowed a higher number of people to start and work in businesses and consultancies without necessarily being restricted to ‘conventional office settings’. Coincidently, the co-benefits of working from home may become even more important in the long term, for example, reducing transaction costs of commuting in large urban centres and decreasing GHG emissions, while simultaneously reducing physical place costs. We live in a world where work space and place are collapsing, and we are less bound by the traditional office workplace.

What will the future look like?

e-Dialogue Discussion Leader

Professor Ann Dale, Trudeau Fellow Alumna (2004), School of Environment & Sustainability, Faculty of Applied Social Sciences at Royal Roads University

Expert Panel

Karen Kun, Executive Director and Co-Founder, Waterlution
Giovanna Mingarelli, CEO and Co-Founder MCrowdsourcing (MC2) Inc
Michel Frojomovic, Lead, Community Data Program Canadian Council on Social Development
Caroline van Bers, Program Manager, The Integrated Assessment Society (TIAS)
Craig Bennell, Professor in the Department of Psychology at Carleton University, Academic Director, 1125@Carleton
Rebecca Foon, Urban Planner and Director, Sustainability Solutions Group
Yuill Herbert, Founding Director, Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG)
Chris Strashok, CRC Research Associate and Royal Roads University Associate Faculty Member