One Year On | Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity and the Future of Work

Event date/time: 

Thursday, April 4, 2019 - 2:30pm to 4:00pm
Life Sciences Laboratory N330 | UMass Amherst

This panel discusses a new report—“Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity, and the Future of Work.” 

The report is based on an NSF funded workshop held at UMass one year ago, bringing together experts from across the social sciences, computer sciences, and engineering. The report outlines shared knowledge of the current social organizational and technological processes transforming labor markets, and lays out research questions that will engage computer scientists, engineers, and social scientists in imagining brighter futures. The report includes responses by key stakeholders like labor and business leaders, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit advocates, as well as state and local policymakers. The goal of this session is to discuss a central research agenda for an important, and much needed conversation around crucial questions of racial disparities in automation and work, particularly the social and technical challenges of shaping emergent technologies that are equitable and result in "good" jobs for a wider range of workers.

Refreshments will be served.

RSVP | Report Launch: Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity and the Future of Work


The ISSR project on Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity and the Future of Work is a series of research and policy dialogues supported by NSF Award #1744356. The disappearance of stable work and the precarity of employment is a growing problem in the US, but its effects are not evenly distributed. The race gap in pay, and lack of racial diversity in the science and engineering workforce who is responsible for designing technology, are problems that converge with changes in technology and work. These problems are compounded by spatial segregation, favoring skill-rich areas and leaving vulnerable populations further isolated. Can emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) be imagined in a way that increases equity and diversity? Can we organize work in a way that contributes to the quality of technologies, and the productivity and satisfaction of workers in an increasingly diverse population? This project aims to convene experts in social sciences, computational sciences, and engineering in order to articulate the social and technical dimensions in understanding the challenges of shaping emergent technologies that are equitable and result in “good” jobs for a wider range of workers.