Roundtable Discussion on Workforce 4.0 with U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker and Permanent State Secretary at the Federal Minister of Labor and Social Affair Thorben Albrecht
Together with Bayer Corporation, the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) was pleased to host a roundtable discussion with U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Permanent State Secretary at the Federal Minister of Labor and Social Affair Thorben Albrecht, and fellow thought leaders in the German and European business community on how rapidly changing technologies are shaping the future of work.
Technological advances are essential to productivity growth and improving society’s standard of living. These advances can create insecurity by changing how we do our jobs or, at the extreme, creating wholly new occupations and eliminating other jobs entirely. At the same time, the U.S. and German workforces are changing in similar ways, as our people grow older and more diverse, seek new work/life balances, explore new combinations of short- and long-term employment, become more entrepreneurial, and need new and lifelong skills training.
Through this conversation, Secretary Pritzker sought ideas about how changing technology impacts work. This conversation complemented the dialogue the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs is currently leading in Germany through the Green Paper Work 4.0. The working luncheon identified key questions and issues: What technologies are transforming employment? What are successful practices of new technologies? What aspects of the “future of work” should the United States and Germany focus on to remain globally competitive?
The participants came to the conclusion that introducing new technologies is one of the biggest challenges in modern Human Resources. The dialogue on this topic is essential for further innovation process – for decision- and policy makers, small- and medium sized companies as well as for governments.