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The future of work: Trends, challenges and potential initiatives

15-02-2021

The current coronavirus pandemic and its accompanying health and economic crises have highlighted and heightened certain trends and challenges which were already affecting the labour market in Europe. These include accelerated digitalisation and automation, increased use of artificial intelligence, constraints relating to a lack of digital skills, and problems concerning the status of platform workers and other workers in non-standard forms of employment. In parallel, there has been an unprecedented ...

The current coronavirus pandemic and its accompanying health and economic crises have highlighted and heightened certain trends and challenges which were already affecting the labour market in Europe. These include accelerated digitalisation and automation, increased use of artificial intelligence, constraints relating to a lack of digital skills, and problems concerning the status of platform workers and other workers in non-standard forms of employment. In parallel, there has been an unprecedented expansion in teleworking, and in the development of transport and delivery platforms, as a result of the need for social distancing during the pandemic. Many of these changes will outlive the current crisis and generate in turn new challenges, which the EU and Member States will need to address.

Digital automation and the future of work

29-01-2021

This report addresses the nature, scope and possible effects of digital automation. It reviews relevant literature and situates modern debates on technological change in historical context. It also offers some policy options that, if implemented, would help to harness technology for positive economic and social ends. The report recognises that technological change can affect not just the volume of work but also its quality. It identifies threats to job quality and an unequal distribution of the risks ...

This report addresses the nature, scope and possible effects of digital automation. It reviews relevant literature and situates modern debates on technological change in historical context. It also offers some policy options that, if implemented, would help to harness technology for positive economic and social ends. The report recognises that technological change can affect not just the volume of work but also its quality. It identifies threats to job quality and an unequal distribution of the risks and benefits associated with digital automation. In response, it recommends a number of policy options – ones that aim to go beyond the provision of skills and training and which seek a human-centred approach to digital transformations of work based on industrial democracy and social partnership. Overall, the report pushes for a new Digital Social Contract and a future of work that works for all

Εξωτερικός συντάκτης

DG, EPRS_This study has been written by David Spencer, Matt Cole, Simon Joyce, Xanthe Whittaker and Mark Stuart of the Leeds University Business School, University of Leeds, UK, at the request of the Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA) and managed by the Scientific Foresight Unit, within the Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (EPRS) of the Secretariat of the European Parliament.

Plenary round-up - January 2021

22-01-2021

The main debates of the January 2021 plenary session were on the inauguration of the new President of the United States, and the presentation of the Portuguese EU Council Presidency. Members also debated the humanitarian situation of refugees and migrants at the EU's external borders, as well as the EU global strategy on Covid 19 vaccinations, and the social and employment crisis caused by the pandemic and the EU's response. Lack of transparency in Council appointments to the European Public Prosecutor's ...

The main debates of the January 2021 plenary session were on the inauguration of the new President of the United States, and the presentation of the Portuguese EU Council Presidency. Members also debated the humanitarian situation of refugees and migrants at the EU's external borders, as well as the EU global strategy on Covid 19 vaccinations, and the social and employment crisis caused by the pandemic and the EU's response. Lack of transparency in Council appointments to the European Public Prosecutor's Office and the consequences of earthquakes in Croatia were also discussed. Members discussed the Court of Auditors' annual report, and Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borell made statements on the arrest of Aleksei Navalny, on enhancing EU external action in Latin America and the Caribbean, and on the latest developments in the National Assembly of Venezuela.

The right to disconnect

13-01-2021

In the context of the digital transformation in the world of work, the European Parliament's Employment and Social Affairs Committee has adopted a legislative-initiative report calling on the Commission to propose an EU directive that lays down minimum requirements for the right to disconnect. The practice of remote working through digital tools intensified through the coronavirus lockdown measures has drawn increasing attention to the issues of constant connectivity and the blurring boundaries between ...

In the context of the digital transformation in the world of work, the European Parliament's Employment and Social Affairs Committee has adopted a legislative-initiative report calling on the Commission to propose an EU directive that lays down minimum requirements for the right to disconnect. The practice of remote working through digital tools intensified through the coronavirus lockdown measures has drawn increasing attention to the issues of constant connectivity and the blurring boundaries between working and non-working time. Parliament is expected to vote on this legislative initiative during its January 2021 plenary session.

Data subjects, digital surveillance, AI and the future of work

23-12-2020

The report provides an in-depth overview of the social, political and economic urgencies in identifying what we call the ‘new surveillance workplace’. The report assesses the range of technologies that are being introduced to monitor, track and, ultimately, watch workers, and looks at the immense changes they imbue in several arenas. How are institutions responding to the widespread uptake of new tracking technologies in workplaces, from the office, to the contact centre, to the factory? What are ...

The report provides an in-depth overview of the social, political and economic urgencies in identifying what we call the ‘new surveillance workplace’. The report assesses the range of technologies that are being introduced to monitor, track and, ultimately, watch workers, and looks at the immense changes they imbue in several arenas. How are institutions responding to the widespread uptake of new tracking technologies in workplaces, from the office, to the contact centre, to the factory? What are the parameters to protect the privacy and other rights of workers, given the unprecedented and ever-pervasive functions of monitoring technologies? The report evidences how and where new technologies are being implemented; looks at the impact that surveillance workspaces are having on the employment relationship and on workers themselves at the psychosocial level; and outlines the social, legal and institutional frameworks within which this is occurring, across the EU and beyond, ultimately arguing that more worker representation is necessary to protect the data rights of workers.

Εξωτερικός συντάκτης

This study has been written by Associate Professor Dr Phoebe V. Moore, University of Leicester School of Business, United Kingdom, and Guest Research Fellow, Weizenbaum Institute, Wissenschaftszentrum für Sozialforschung, Berlin. The study was prepared at the request of the Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA) and managed by the Scientific Foresight Unit, within the Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (EPRS) of the Secretariat of the European Parliament.

What if artificial intelligence in medical imaging could accelerate Covid-19 treatment?

21-12-2020

Thermal imaging cameras are currently being installed in office buildings, hospitals, shopping malls, schools and airports as a means of detecting people with fever-like symptoms. Given that these cameras are not necessarily designed to operate as medical devices, there are questions about their suitability in the context of the current pandemic. This note provides an overview of the use of thermal imaging empowered with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, its suitability in the context of ...

Thermal imaging cameras are currently being installed in office buildings, hospitals, shopping malls, schools and airports as a means of detecting people with fever-like symptoms. Given that these cameras are not necessarily designed to operate as medical devices, there are questions about their suitability in the context of the current pandemic. This note provides an overview of the use of thermal imaging empowered with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, its suitability in the context of the current pandemic and the core technical limitations of this technology. The main legal responses and ethical concerns related to the use of AI in the context of thermal imaging at entry points to identify and triage people who may have elevated temperatures are also examined.

What if AI could improve thermal imaging, to help fight coronavirus?

21-12-2020

Thermal imaging cameras are currently being installed in office buildings, hospitals, shopping malls, schools and airports as a means of detecting people with fever-like symptoms. Given that these cameras are not necessarily designed to operate as medical devices, there are questions about their suitability in the context of the current pandemic. This note provides an overview of the use of thermal imaging empowered with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, its suitability in the context of ...

Thermal imaging cameras are currently being installed in office buildings, hospitals, shopping malls, schools and airports as a means of detecting people with fever-like symptoms. Given that these cameras are not necessarily designed to operate as medical devices, there are questions about their suitability in the context of the current pandemic. This note provides an overview of the use of thermal imaging empowered with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, its suitability in the context of the current pandemic and the core technical limitations of this technology. The main legal responses and ethical concerns related to the use of AI in the context of thermal imaging at entry points to identify and triage people who may have elevated temperatures are also examined.

What future for democracy?

11-12-2020

A panel at the 2020 ESPAS conference discussed the future of democracy in the light of the coronavirus pandemic. Participatory democracy was seen as a potential remedy for polarisation, while digitisation brings a need for careful governance. Misinformation and disinformation needs to be addressed through education. A poll of attendees identified tax equity as a key innovation for successfully rebuilding democracy.

A panel at the 2020 ESPAS conference discussed the future of democracy in the light of the coronavirus pandemic. Participatory democracy was seen as a potential remedy for polarisation, while digitisation brings a need for careful governance. Misinformation and disinformation needs to be addressed through education. A poll of attendees identified tax equity as a key innovation for successfully rebuilding democracy.

Sustainable economic recovery

11-12-2020

A panel at the 2020 ESPAS conference discussed how to create a sustainable economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic. Robust governance is needed to get the most out of the new resources created at EU level. Both public funding and private capital are needed for the green transition. Public access to big data sets was identified as a critical issue, to prevent harmful monopolies. A poll of attendees identified dependence on fossil fuels as a key obstacle to a sustainable recovery.

A panel at the 2020 ESPAS conference discussed how to create a sustainable economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic. Robust governance is needed to get the most out of the new resources created at EU level. Both public funding and private capital are needed for the green transition. Public access to big data sets was identified as a critical issue, to prevent harmful monopolies. A poll of attendees identified dependence on fossil fuels as a key obstacle to a sustainable recovery.

Next generation or lost generation? Children, young people and the pandemic

10-12-2020

The next generation, sometimes referred to as 'Generation Z' or 'Gen Z', includes children and young people born after 1995/1996. Also known as the 'iGeneration' they are the first digital natives: they have grown up with smartphones and tablets, and most have internet access at home. While, in the EU, they are the most diverse generation when it comes to their origins, and best educated, in terms of level of education, they are the most vulnerable, including on the labour market. They are the generation ...

The next generation, sometimes referred to as 'Generation Z' or 'Gen Z', includes children and young people born after 1995/1996. Also known as the 'iGeneration' they are the first digital natives: they have grown up with smartphones and tablets, and most have internet access at home. While, in the EU, they are the most diverse generation when it comes to their origins, and best educated, in terms of level of education, they are the most vulnerable, including on the labour market. They are the generation most at risk of poverty, and worst affected by the lack of intergenerational earning mobility. In addition, they have been hardest hit by the coronavirus crisis, following school closures and also job losses. The negative trends this generation was facing prior to the pandemic solidified during the outbreak and the lockdown measures. The well-being, educational success and labour market integration of this generation have a major impact on the general well-being of society, as well as on productivity growth, and thus on the entire economy now and in the future. It will, however, be another 15 years before this generation, along with the 'Millennials' (born between 1981 and 1995/1996) form the majority in the voting age population across the EU, and their views, expectations and attitudes are taken into consideration when designing policies. In this context, policies must address Generation Z from a young age as active citizens who need to be both protected and empowered. In the von der Leyen Commission more than half the Commissioners have been entrusted with tasks that directly address challenges for this generation, ranging from access to quality education, health, housing, nutrition and labour markets to combating poverty and protecting children's and young people's rights. This is an opportunity to design comprehensive policies that cut across sectors and that address the entire generation under the age of 22/24 in a multidimensional way. It is also a way to include children and young people in the democratic process and monitor their progress across multiple indicators in relation to the United Nations sustainable development goals. Stronger pro-child and pro-youth policies can help to achieve more balanced and efficient welfare states that genuinely protect the entire population.

Προσεχείς εκδηλώσεις

01-03-2021
Decarbonising European industry: hydrogen and other solutions (online event)
Εργαστήριο -
STOA
01-03-2021
Hearing on Transport of live animals in third countries
Ακρόαση -
ANIT
01-03-2021
Exchange of views with HR/VP Josep Borrell
Ακρόαση -
INGE

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