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June 11, 2024

The Social Workplace: A Compendium

Key Points Executive Summary In an era marked by a decline in social capital across American institutions, the workplace has become a crucial arena for fostering social connections. Through their careers, Americans not only satisfy their economic needs but also find personal fulfillment, build social networks, and seek—and often discover—a sense of meaning and purpose…

April 11, 2024

What a New Report on 10 years of AI Research Reveals

‘Lifelong learning’ is not just a buzzword. It’s a necessity as artificial intelligence changes the workplace As artificial intelligence advances, the landscape of work may be undergoing a seismic shift. The economic potential of this emerging technology is staggering; many predict that it will be a transformative force on par with innovations like the steam engine, electricity or the transistor. To paraphrase Bette Davis in “All About Eve,” “Fasten…

April 3, 2024

The Social Workplace: Social Capital, Human Dignity, and Work in America, Volume III 

Executive Summary In this report, we analyze 41 interviews of participants in an earlier quantitative survey of worker attitudes. These interviews were targeted to survey participants age 22–29 to better understand the priorities and concerns of younger workers.  Our findings underscore the paramount importance of flexibility and purpose in work. Our analysis suggests the definition…

March 20, 2024

When Workers Say They Value Flexibility, They Mean It

FlexJobs, a career services firm specializing in remote and hybrid jobs, is out with another of its regular surveys on American attitudes towards job flexibility. Consistent with our own surveys, which found Americans valued flexibility on the job above all other factors, including pay, the new FlexJobs data takes the analysis a step or two further. It appears that…

March 19, 2024

Conservatives Distrust Higher Ed—But Still Need Degrees

Ideological opposition to “woke” colleges and universities could harm conservatives and rural communities. American’s faith in our colleges and universities has seen a marked decline in recent years, with the percentage of adults who say they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the institutions of higher education plunging from 57 percent to…

February 23, 2024

Study What You Love or Study What Will Make You Money?

There’s a better way to think about—and talk to young people about—college. When it comes to education, adolescents and young adults face a dilemma: to follow their intrinsic interests or to choose a course of study they think (or have been told) will secure their economic futures. For most, to ask this question is to…

February 20, 2024

Planning a Career in the Age of AI

After decades of industrial robots, factory layoffs, and outsourcing, automation has finally arrived in the cubicle. A recent Wall Street Journal article spotlighted how the new “robots for the mind”—the complex algorithms and language models of generative AI—are creating rising uncertainty in the professional class.  In the past, automation has generally been more of a concern for blue-collar workers, especially those in the…

February 5, 2024

The Biden Administration’s War on Flexibility at Work

One of the signal errors of Biden administration policy has been its tendency to take regulatory actions that reduce the flexibility of the economy generally and the labor market in particular. The latest example of this problem is a new US Department of Labor rule aimed at reclassifying millions of “gig” workers—people who work in contract roles—as employees. The…

January 31, 2024

Perspective: The ‘social workplace’ and why it matters to Zoomers

Social connections are increasingly as important as pay to younger workers. A mission-led workplace can help In his 1759 book “The Theory of Moral Sentiments,” Adam Smith observed that human sociality is the taproot of economics. The instinct to “truck, barter and exchange,” Smith argued, arises out of our need for others and is the…

January 29, 2024

The Value of a Bachelor’s Degree

Key Points As public confidence in higher education has declined, Americans have become less sanguine about the bachelor’s degree and skeptical of its potential return on investment. Nonetheless, four-year degrees continue to be associated with significant economic and noneconomic benefits for individuals and communities. For those who want to attend college, have adequate financing options, and can finish their degrees, the benefits of…