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Workforce Readiness and the Future of Work

Identifying the 252 needs for workforce development to meet our future is a complex, wicked, and urgent problem

Published: Tuesday, April 2, 2019 - 12:00

(Routledge: New York) -- Workforce readiness is an issue that is of great national and societal importance. For the United States and other countries to thrive in a globally interconnected environment of wide-ranging opportunities and threats, the need to develop and maintain a skilled and adaptable workforce is critical.

National investments in job training and schools remain essential in stimulating businesses and employment agencies to collaborate productively with educators who provide both training and vocational guidance.

Workforce Readiness and the Future of Work (Routledge, 2019), edited by Fred Oswald, Tara S. Behrend, and Lori Foster, argues that the large-scale multifaceted efforts required to ensure a reliable and strong supply of talent and skill in the U.S. workforce should be addressed simultaneously and systemically across disciplines of thought and levels of analysis. In a four-part framework, the book covers the major areas of:
Education in the K-12, vocational, postsecondary, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) arenas
Economic and labor market considerations
Employment, organizations, and the world of work
Laws, policies, and budgets at the federal, state, local, and military levels

With contributions from leading scholars, this volume informs high-priority workforce effectiveness issues of current and future concern, including concrete research, practice, and policy directions to generate novel insights of a multilevel and systemwide nature.

As the chapters in this volume attest, understanding the effects of technology and automation on the future of work and identifying the 252 needs for workforce development to meet that future is a complex, wicked, and urgent problem.

View chapter abstracts.

About the editors

Frederick L. Oswald is a professor and Herbert S. Autrey Chair in Social Sciences in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Rice University. His expertise, research, and grants focus on measuring individual differences (ability, knowledge, motivation, personality, interests) in organizational, educational, and military settings. He is the past president (2017–2018) of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP), a member of the Board of Human Systems Integration (BOHSI) of the National Academy of Science (2015–2021), and a fellow of the American Psychological Association, Association for Psychological Science, and SIOP. 

Tara S. Behrend is an associate professor in the Department of Organizational Sciences and Communication at The George Washington University. Her work addresses career decision-making in STEM disciplines, and technology-based recruiting, selection, training, and skills development in organizations. She is the editor of The Industrial-Organizational Psychologist, Senior Research Fellow for the Massachusetts Institute for College and Career Readiness, a psychometrician for the American Council on Education, and a 2016 Cyber Initiative Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford University.

Lori L. Foster is a professor in the Department of Psychology at North Carolina State University and the School of Commerce at the University of Cape Town. She served as a fellow with the Obama White House’s Social and Behavioral Sciences Team (SBST, 2014–2016), and as a behavioral science advisor to the United Nations (2016). In her academic role, she oversees the 4D Lab, focused on research at the intersection of work, psychology, technology, and development. In the private sector, she is the head of Behavioral Science at pymetrics. She is a fellow of the American Psychological Association, Association for Psychological Science, and SIOP. 


About The Author

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Taylor and Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group, part of Informa PLC, publishes more than 2,500 journals and more than 5,000 new books each year; content spans all areas of humanities, social sciences, behavioral sciences, science, technology, and medicine. It provides quality information and knowledge that enables customers to perform their jobs efficiently, enhance their education, and help contribute to the advancement of their chosen market sectors. Taylor & Francis is committed to distributing and making its journals as widely available as possible to nonprofit institutions in developing countries. Its publishing houses include Routledge, CRC Press, and Productivity Press, which is part of CRC Press.