About this Research Topic
Around the world, the nature and meaning of work is rapidly evolving with fast and profound changes. These changes are driven by pressing innovations, structural, technological and communication transformations, economic developments, and social changes and these transformations are expected to shape the future of work. In response to how these transformations will particularly impact the future of work, the International Labour Organization (ILO) has identified four main research areas work and society, decent jobs for all, the organization of work and production, and the governance of work. Looking ahead to 2030, formal work participation rates are expected to continue their long-term decline. The ILO and other international agencies are thus focusing on declining labour force participation rates and the growth of non-standard employment in the last decade.
As a result of these transformations in the work place, the work of professions and entrepreneurs, with clients at the centre of their core business, is becoming more important for achieving sustainable inclusive growth and decent work conditions for future generations. Consequently, there is a need for scientific analyses of the role of small and medium-size enterprises, and the self-employed (i.e., consultant professionals, business owners) because they represent a major source of future job creation. Moreover, while some startups succeed, most fail -
suggesting more complex dimensions to entrepreneurship beyond the simple ‘success’ story.
Furthermore, worldwide changes in production processes are expected due to the deployment of machines, robots, and artificial intelligence. These technological changes may mean a jobless future for some individuals and job opportunities for those who can adapt to rapid change.
Digital work is another pressing challenge. Constant digital connectivity allows work to be performed at any time and from almost anywhere. However, the effects of digital work on working conditions seems ambiguous and contradictory. Thus, digitalization may improve work-life balance and autonomy, but it may also be harmful to individuals’ rest and recovery and may correlate with a rise in work-related stress and illness.
This Research Topic is particularly interested in manuscripts that offer insights into the future of work, with a focus on small-to-medium enterprises, their employees, and their entrepreneurs. We encourage a focus on how innovation, entrepreneurship, and digital and robotic transformation will shape the health and productivity of individuals and enterprises. Not least because the emergence of congruent and incongruent relations among these trends make for a dynamic world of work and business. This Research Topic is open to, but not limited by, the following themes:
• Digital-age health and well-being at work
• Inclusive labour markets
• Mobile work
• New forms of employment
• Work organization
• Work-life balance
• Work-related health outcomes
• Working time work
• Future of work
• Labour standards
• Economic development
• Informal employment
• Precarious employment
• Temporary employment
• Non-standard forms of employment
• Employment policy
• New forms of entrapreneurship in smart cities
• Social entrepreneurship
• Working conditions
• Hours of work, detachment
• Decent work
• Occupational safety and health
• Future work skills
• Future personal resources
• Individual differences
Keywords: Future work skills, Intrapreneurship, Innovation, occupational health, business