Education and work have always been closely related, but, in the future, we can anticipate that they will become more intertwined. KnowledgeWorks recent publication, The Future of Learning: Redefining Readiness from the Inside Out, explores scenarios where people will need to learn new skills continuously throughout their lives, and where careers are more likely to resemble mosaics than linear pathways. With the boundaries between work and learning blurring, collaboration between educational institutions, employers and community organizations will be a key strategy in ensuring readiness for the next generation.
The task might feel daunting. Sector siloes are strong, and finding inroads toward new or deeper relationships can be a challenge. Just released, KnowledgeWorks Shaping the Future of Readiness: A Discussion and Facilitation Guide© aims to help stakeholders jump start those collaborations. The guide, which supports cross-sector audiences in facilitating and participating in meaningful conversations about the future of readiness in their communities, contains three activities, which are based on activities KnowledgeWorks strategic foresight team has used with stakeholder groups:
- Exploring the Future of Work: Stakeholders explore broad and local changes on the horizon and consider how the future of work might unfold.
- Creating a New Profile of a Graduate: Stakeholders consider what knowledge, skills, and dispositions might help young people thrive in a new world of work and what learning experiences they might need.
- Leveraging Cross-Sector Opportunities: Stakeholders highlight ways different sectors and organizations can collaborate to support future college and career readiness.
The publication includes recommendations for hosting a cross-sector convening on future readiness and exercises and discussion prompts to guide participants toward actionable insights.
Given how work is changing, education, employment, and community leaders face a critical window of choice. Even today, graduates’ skill sets and employers’ needs are often out of sync. The rise of smart machines and the decline of full-time employment could widen that gap. By critically and creatively looking at possibilities for the future, developing a shared understanding of what young people will need to know and be able to do, and establishing clear next steps for collaborative action, communities can begin the work of redefining readiness for a new era.
Shaping the Future of Readiness: A Discussion and Facilitation Guide© supports cross-sector audiences in facilitating and participating in meaningful conversations about the future of readiness in their communities.