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  • Published: 18 April 2017
  • ISBN: 9780241201046
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 256
Categories:

The Wealth of Humans

Work and Its Absence in the Twenty-first Century




To work is human. It puts food on the table, meaningfully structures our days, and strengthens our social ties. When work works, it provides the basis for a stable social order.

Yet the world of work is changing fast, and in unexpected ways. With rapid advances in information technology, huge swathes of the job market - from cleaners and drivers to journalists and doctors - are being automated, or soon will be: a staggering 47% of American employment is at risk of automation within the next two to three decades. Yet at the same time millions more jobs are being created. What does the future of work hold?

In this illuminating new investigation of what this revolution in work means for us, Ryan Avent lays bare the contradictions in today's global labour market. From Volvo's operations in Sweden to a vast Foxconn production facility in Shenzhen, via Indian development economists and Silicon Valley venture capitalists, he offers the first clear explanation of the state we're in-and how we could get out of it.

With an ever-increasing divide between the rich and the rest, Avent states, something has got to give. The traditional escape routes - improved education, wage subsidies, and new industries built by entrepreneurs-will no longer work as they once did. In order to navigate our way across today's rapidly transforming economic landscape, he argues, we must revisit our previous experiences of massive technological change - and radically reassess the very idea of how, and why, we work.

  • Published: 18 April 2017
  • ISBN: 9780241201046
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 256
Categories:

Praise for The Wealth of Humans

Avent is a fluent writer who takes complex ideas and works them, like Plasticine, into vivid models ... The Wealth of Humans stands favourable comparison with Capital in the 21st Century by Thomas Piketty

Martin Vander Weyer, Telegraph

Midway through Ryan Avent's The Wealth of Humans, I found myself marking "H" in the margin, to stand for heresy, so thick and fast do the counterintuitive insights arrive ... I found the virtuosity with which Mr Avent knocked down possible solutions disquieting

Giles Wilkes, Economist

Timely ... the author is a confident guide ... deft at exploring the economic, political and social changes triggered by technological progress and the abundance of cheap labour

Emma Jacobs, Financial Times

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