Thinking about the future: the fourth industrial revolution, capitalism, waged labour and anti-work

Book chapter


Avis, R. 2023. Thinking about the future: the fourth industrial revolution, capitalism, waged labour and anti-work. in: Malloch, M., Cairns, L., Evans, K and O'Connor, B. (ed.) The SAGE Handbook of Learning and Work London SAGE Publications. pp. 497-511
AuthorsAvis, R.
EditorsMalloch, M., Cairns, L., Evans, K and O'Connor, B.
Abstract

This chapter explores the fourth Industrial Revolution (4th IR) as an ideological and imaginary construct setting it within its broader socio-economic and historical context. I will be mindful of the 4th IR’s relationship with the ongoing development of capitalism, noting that this is not all of a piece being subject to mediation by its national and regional location as well as its position in the global south or north. Whilst the 4th IR is an ideological construct it has material consequences which impact not only on the labour market but also on technical vocational education and training (TVET) and education more generally. The manner in which we conceptualise the 4th IR has implications for the way we conceive education and TVET across the lifespan and its relation to the lifespace – the balance between work and life. This leads to a discussion of the labour market as well as the manner in which skill is conceptualised. This in turn is allied to debates that address waged and unwaged labour as well as that which is socially useful. How do such notions sit with discussions that explore anti- and post-work? What are the affordances that the 4th IR offers for the development of emancipatory and progressive practices? How compatible are these with the continuance of capitalist relations and how far can a reformist strategy take us? These are some of the questions this chapter seeks to explore, but first it is necessary to unpack the 4th IR.

Keywordsfourth Industrial Revolution; capitalism ; ideological construct
Page range497-511
Year2023
Book titleThe SAGE Handbook of Learning and Work
PublisherSAGE Publications
Place of publicationLondon
Edition1st
ISBN9781526491114
Web address (URL)https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/the-sage-handbook-of-learning-and-work/book267999#description
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File Access Level
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Output statusPublished
Publication dates
OnlineMay 2022
Publication process dates
Deposited13 Jan 2023
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