Queen's International Institute on Social Policy

Queen's International Institute on Social Policy
Queen's International Institute on Social Policy

2018 Queen's International Institute - The Future of Work: What do we do? [Image] 

August 15 - 17, 2018

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Queen's University, Kingston, ON

Presentations and Videos

Expand to view a list of the presentations from the 2018 Queen's International Institute on Social Policy

Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Session 4

Session 5

​​​Session 7


YouTube Logo [image]
Videos of the each presentation are available on YouTube.  View the full playlist by using this link or copy and paste the following URL into your browser - https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL57JJtmhwgXnx2dFhCHmAsGfTxl7efYwS


Policy Options Articles

Policy Options is an online forum published by IRPP.  Canadian and international experts tackled these themes at the Queen’s International Institute on Social Policy in August 2018. This series highlights some of the analysis they shared at the conference.

Expand to view the list of articles...

PolicyOptions Miles Corak image]
Dec 11 - Enhancing the financial and human capital of lower income children

Miles Corak, Senior Scholar at the Stone Center of Socio-economic Inequality and Professor of Economics at The Graduate Center, City University of New York


PolicyOptions Parisa Mahboubi image]
Dec 10 - Zeroing in on Canada’s literacy and numeracy skills gap

Parisa Mahboubi, Senior Policy Analyst, C.D. Howe Institute


PolicyOptions Eliza Easton image]
Dec 7 - Want a robot-proof job of the future? Start getting creative

Eliza Easton, Principal Policy Researcher, Creative Economy and Data Analytics Team, Nesta


PolicyOptions Zabeen Hirji image]Dec 6 - Prepare now for the workforce of the future

Zabeen Hirji, Global Advisor, Future of Work Program, Deloitte
Stephen Harrington, Senior Manager, National Talent Strategies, Deloitte


PolicyOptions Stijn Broecke image]
Dec 5 - Managing the risks and opportunities of job automation

Stijn Broecke, Senior Economist, Future of Work Initiative, OECD


PolicyOptions Kristyn Frank image]Dec 4 - Will automation worsen job prospects for vulnerable workers?

Kristyn Frank, Senior Research Analyst, Social Analysis and Modelling Division, Statistics Canada
Marc Frenette, Researcher, Statistics Canada


PolicyOptions Catherine Chandler-Crichlow image]
Nov 29 - The future of work, or of workers

Catherine Chandler-Crichlow, President and Chief Human Capital Officer of 3C Workforce Solutions


PolicyOptions Sarah Doyle [image]Nov 28 - Look to existing models to prepare workers for the future

Sarah Doyle, Director of Policy and Research, Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship
Sarah Villeneuve, Policy Analyst, Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship
Diana Rivera, Economist, Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship

PolicyOptions Werner Eichhorst  [image]
Nov 27 - How Germany is tackling the future of work

Werner Eichhorst, Coordinator of Labor Market and Social Policy in Europe, IZA, Institute of Labour Economics


PolicyOptions Sarah Box  [image]
Nov 26 - Digital transformation must focus on women and girls

Sarah Box, Counsellor in the OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation


PolicyOptions Harvey Weingarten  [image]
Nov 23 - Adapting post-secondary education for the future

Harvey Weingarten, President and CEO of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario


PolicyOptions Palamar and Pacoll  [image]Nov 22 -"Career Pathways" a promising model for skills training

Max Palamar, Director, Analytics and Evaluation, Blueprint ADE
Kelly Pasolli, Senior Researcher, Blueprint ADE


PolicyOptions Ethan Pollack  [image]
Nov 21 - Upskilling workers for the new economy

Ethan Pollack, Associate Director for Research and Policy, The Future or Work Initiative, The Aspen Institute

PolicyOptions Mike Colledge IPSOS  [image]
Nov 20 - Canadians cautiously pessimistic about future of work

Mike Colledge, President, IPSOS Public Affairs


PolicyOptions Gabriela Ramos, Chief of Staff and G20 Sherpa, OECD [image]
Nov 19 - Ensuring technological growth works for all

Gabriela Ramos, Chief of Staff, OECD



Are Canadians ready for the work of the future? Is Canadian social policy? New technologies such as artificial intelligence, advanced robotics and nanotechnology are rapidly altering the skills composition of jobs, prospects for different occupations and the very nature of work itself.  The contours of the future of work are beginning to emerge.  The federal government’s Advisory Council on Economic Growth estimates that by 2030 technological change will displace nearly a quarter of the tasks currently performed by Canadian workers, and that over 10% of workers will lose their jobs (Learning Nation, December 2017).

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Knowledge workers and professionals will not be immune from the transformative impact of these technologies.  But the occupations most at risk are likely those involving routine activities — jobs usually held by relatively low-skilled and low-paid workers. For many, the place and nature of work will also likely change, with the prospect of less job security, lower wages, and less predictable work. On the other hand, some occupations and industries are likely to grow – especially those that engage higher-order cognitive skills, interpersonal skills and comfort with technology. Across the board, one thing is certain -- change will be ubiquitous, putting a premium on all individuals’ adaptability, resilience and ability to reskill across the life course.

QIISP 2018 does not attempt to predict the precise future of the labour market; the direction of change is clear. Rather QIISP asks whether our social policies are nimble enough for an uncertain future, whether incremental change will suffice or whether radical rethinking is in order. QIISP will ask what Canadians need to do to get ready for the future of work.

In recent decades, social policy thinking has placed a lot of faith in learning systems – from early childhood development through postsecondary education and adult retraining. How do we prepare young people for a new world of work? How can we facilitate learning, reskilling and adaptability for working adults?  Do our current approaches need to be rethought?  The Advisory Council doubles down on this strategy, calling for a major investment in adult skills development.

How do we help those at risk of being left behind? The data on efforts to retrain older workers displaced in recent decades are not reassuring. We face the prospect that there will be casualties who cannot be easily retrained for the work of the future. Rapid technological change may also increase the ranks of precarious workers, raising questions about policies relating to the regulation of employment standards and business practices, minimum wages and benefits, and income support.

Finally, will the impact of technological change on jobs, wages, and the workplace deepen social faultlines? Which groups are likely to be most at risk and which ones more likely to thrive?  What are the implications for women and men, racialized and immigrant Canadians, people with disabilities, and different age groups?  Will new business practices and employment patterns – for example the ‘gig economy’ - reduce everyday social interaction and weaken the ties that bind us together? Will Canadian’s sense of social cohesion be challenged?

QIISP 2018 tackles these questions. The conference opens with the broad context, setting the Canadian pattern in an international context and examining what other countries are doing.  The next three sessions examine the key policy tools: a) education; b) the postsecondary sector and worker reskilling; and c) mechanisms for social protection including employment policies and income support. The fifth session examines the implications for different social groups -- men and women, immigrants and racialized minorities, people with disabilities, and older workers. The sixth session features a roundtable with leaders from business, labour, education, and the community sectors addressing the question: who needs to do what?  And the final sessions asks how politics will shape our collective response to these challenges?

2018 Sponsors:

2018 Sponsors; Canada: Region of Peel; City of Toronto [image]

Employment and Social Development Canada
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada