Increasing automation of human labour has received a lot of media attention recently, from being a focal point of the most recent World Economic Forum to announcements of self-driving autonomous “pods” coming to Greenwich this summer. With the Bank of England reporting that 15 million jobs are under threat from automation, Labour needs to examine whether its platform on employment is fit for the 21st century, and how policy in future Labour Governments should harness new technological developments to create a more equal society.

This round table will be led by Nick Srnicek, who in his most recent book, “Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work”, argues the need of the left to embrace possibilities for technological changes coming from the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”. He has also recently taken part in John McDonnell’s series of “New Economics” talks.

Councillor Joe Goldberg, Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Social Inclusion and Sustainability at Haringey Council, will be responding to Nick’s talk. Haringey have been leading the way in preparing for digital transformation and Joe can bring some practical insights from the front line of local government to the discussion. Joe also sits on the Advisory Panel of the new ‘Changing Work Centre’ being set up by the Fabian Society and Community Union. This is an exciting project examining the way in which work is being transformed in the modern world, and it is great to have them represented in this vital discussion.  

This will be an interactive meeting with lots of opportunity for participant discussion and interaction. Some of the key questions being considered will be: 

  • The rate and scope of automation - what jobs will be lost and when?
  • Is “full employment” still an attainable goal for a Labour government? Is it even desirable?
  • Labour’s response to job losses - retraining, job-shares, basic income?

This event is open to all members of the public. 


April 12, 2016 at 6:30pm - 9:30pm
The Fabian Society
61 Petty France
London SW1H 9EU
United Kingdom
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Nicolas Turner ·

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