IFTF’s research and initiatives have been covered by a wide range of local, national, and international media outlets. Here is a selection of recent media coverage of the Workable Futures Initiative and our associated research.

The Pros and Cons of the On-Demand Economy

Samuel Greengard | November 11, 2016

Photo: Baseline

It’s apparent that digital technology is impacting the world in numerous ways. However, one of the most profound and visible signs is how it’s disrupting organizations and leading to entirely new business and work models. Consider this: The likes of Uber, UpWork and EatWith have introduced entirely new ways to work. In fact, these approaches wouldn’t have been imaginable only a decade ago.

Read the full article on Baseline

Wanted: Creative Solutions to Shape a Workable Future

Marina Gorbis | October 31, 2016

Photo: Peopleimages | Getty Images

If an artist can make ends meet as a human lab rat and an MBA can prosper as a financial nerd-for-hire, why can’t we as a society make the bold and creative platform design choices, and policy and regulatory frameworks, to ensure a future of work that not only provides a profitable return on investments but also a dignified and sustainable livelihood for participants?

Read the full article on Entrepreneur

5 New Rules For Managing A Digital Workforce: Ditch The Resume, Skip The Training

Joe McKendrick | October 26, 2016


Workers of the world unite, you have nothing to lose but your Internet connections. There’s been a great deal of angst lately about jobs—and entire job categories—being lost to the digital wave. But technology takes away with one hand but gives with the other. The rise of cloud computing—with its incredible bevy of online services and information—is giving rise to a new way of working.

Read the full article on Forbes

The Two Gig Economies: One Happy and One Miserable

Josh Zumbrun | October 10, 2016

Photo: Eric Risberg/Associated Press

A rising share of workers no longer report to a single employer, and instead earn a living as contractors or cobbling together an array of gigs. Now the rush to understand this phenomenon is focusing on a new question: Do workers want these arrangements? Or do they feel forced into them by dwindling opportunity from traditional employers?

Read the full article on Wall Street Journal

Can We Design An On-Demand Economy That Will Work For Everyone?

Adele Peters | October 5, 2016


On weekends, LaNeisha, a 33-year-old in San Francisco, borrows a friend’s car to drive for Uber. When she discovered that she could rent out her closet for $290 through a startup called Roost, she turned it into a storage unit. She finds other gigs on Craiglist. For LaNeisha, who struggled to find work otherwise, it’s a way to survive. But it’s not easy.

Read the full article on FastCo.Exist

Voices from the on-demand economy

David Pescovitz | October 3, 2016


Over the last year, my colleagues at Institute for the Future’s Workable Futures Initiative conducted ethnographic interviews with more than 30 people across the country who use on-demand work platforms to make ends meet. There’s Seda, who runs her own small business selling women’s clothing and accessories, but makes ends meet as a professional “lab rat” who participates, sometimes illegally, in clinical trial studies all over the country …

Read the full article on BoingBoing

This Is the Backup Career For More and More U.S. Workers

Rick Wartzman | September 30, 2016


The rise of the platform economy has become a safety net for some. The part-time pizza delivery driver in New York needed help meeting his expenses. The young mother of three from a town in Arkansas was looking for a way to make money after her first husband left her. The 33-year-old in San Francisco was hoping to circumvent employers who tended to judge her, she said, because of her weight, race, and personal history.

Read full article on Fortune

[Image Credit: Flickr user Matt Cornock]

These Will Be The Top Jobs In 2025 (And The Skills You’ll Need To Get Them)

Gwen Moran | March 31, 2016

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Two-thirds of Americans believe that, in 50 years, robots and computers will do much of the work humans now do. The World Economic Forum’s 2016 report, The Future of Jobs, estimates that 5 million jobs will be lost to automation by 2020 and that the number will keep growing. Jobs that once seemed like “safe bets”—office workers and administrative personnel, manufacturing, and even law—will be hit hardest, the report estimates.

Read the full article on FastCo

The future of work intensifies – can a platform be ethical?

Jon Reed | December 16, 2015

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With 2015 winding down, the debate over the gig economy has moved from W-2 versus 1099 into a potent look at whether talent platforms will lead us to a flexible work utopia or a systematic transfer of risk from companies to freelancers. Looming behind this debate is a potentially bigger job disruption via robotics and automation.

Read the full article on Digionomica

How Artifcial Intelligence Could Eliminate (Or Reduce) the Need for Managers

Federico Guerrini | August 3, 2015

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Some people, including gurus like Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking, are scared by the possible applications of artificial intelligence in the military. Others see machines with AI as a threat for workers, stealing away their jobs. But a large number of other experts tend to downplay these worries, treating them a bit like superstitions for easily impressed kids.

Read the full article on Forbes

Think your management job is safe? Beware the ‘iCEO’

Katherine Noyes | April 22, 2015

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The prospect of automation has long sparked fears of jobs lost to robotic replacements, but typically such worries have focused on blue-collar and other low-level positions. Well, the Institute for the Future has a message for all those in the upper echelons feeling complacent about their job security: The iCEO is coming.

Read the full article on Computer World

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