AP/SOSC 1510 6.00
The Future Of Work
In the past twenty years Canadian patterns of work and employment have been profoundly transformed, putting an end to the employment security that characterised the post- World War II era. But in an era of rapid global warming and chaotic shifts arising from globalisation, the outlines of Canada’s next world of work remain troublingly unclear. Are we looking at a brave new world of widespread prosperity, good jobs and constant career mobility, or a polarized world, divided between a shrinking number of good jobs in which security is traded off against personal fulfilment, and a growing number of bad jobs—precarious, dead-end, exploited and vulnerable? Worse still, are we looking at ‘the end of employment’? Will we ‘buy’ our good jobs at the expense of workers in Latin America, Asia and Africa? What new forms of worker representation and action are emerging and need to emerge? What social forces struggle over the contours of Canada’s labour market today? Will massive investment by the governments of formerly poor countries, in the corporations of the Global North shift the balance of power away from the ‘First World’? Whatever happened to leisure? What is ahead for today’s students? Does education still matter? This course looks at the future of work in Canada from these perspectives. The course also surveys ‘the work of others’: the future of employment and work in other countries of the Global North and the Global South.