Innovation & Sustainability Living & Working

Das Progressive Zentrum publishes study on future of work and economy

'Measuring Tomorrows Work and Economy' is based on 50 expert interviews

The study provokes a socio-political debate on the future of work. Based on interviews with 50 experts, the authors identify four core-challenges, give ten policy recommendations and sketch a concept for an inclusive digital transformation.

The future of work is often narrowly understood as comprising automation, or as the ‘platformisation’ of work in the ‘gig economy’. Yet, the impact of new technologies on the workplace is much more complex. The digital transformation fundamentally changes the nature of the economy and the way that people and firms can self-organise, collaborate and create economic and social value.


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The study offers insights into how policy-makers in Europe’s three largest economies (France, the UK, Germany) can shape the socio-economic changes caused by new technologies – thereby taking into account businesses and workers alike. To gain these insights, the authors Dr. Florian Ranft und Dr. Barry Colfer have spoken with 50 experts in politics, business, academia and civil society in the aforementioned economies as well as Brussels.

Based on these interviews, the authors develop a framework for digital transformation to be used as a guideline for decision-makers in politics and business. The key challenges identified are

  • the need to ensure an inclusive digital transformation,
  • new requirements for training and skills,
  • fostering growth and innovation potential in the economy and
  • the fact that “one size does not fit all”.

The study furthermore draws country-specific conclusions from each of the capitals.

Based on the analysis, the authors develop 10 policy recommendations that encompass the fields of communication and dialogue, training and education, investment and planning, along with workplace health and equality. This report aims to inform the British, French, German and wider European debate at a moment when new technologies are in the process of redefining the very basis of our work ethics in advanced economies.

The study was developed in collaboration between the two think-tanks Das Progressive Zentrum and Policy Network and supported by the smart workspace platform Dropbox.

Florian Ranft

Barry Colfer

published on

16 October 2019