As an unprecedented year comes to a close, many of us participated in more Zoom conferences than we could have ever done live. Last year at this time I was physically in Bangladesh presenting at the 4th annual International Conference on Globalization, Entrepreneurship & Emerging Economies. It was my first time in Bangladesh and the professional and cultural lessons were many.
This year’s lessons were different but as important in the understanding of the flattening of the world’s challenges, resources, and resolutions through global collaborations. My keynote speech this year, “How to Meet Opportunity with Adaptability” had three themes:
- Highlight our forthcoming book, “The Future of Work & Entrepreneurship.”
- Share on the disruption in the global labor force caused by the accelerated transformation to a gig economy
- Share the imperative of the adaptation advantage to better address challenges of opportunities, access, and equity. I then summarize the dream, hope, and rise of humanity in the future of work and entrepreneurship.
We are working with a global group of academicians and practitioners who are producing for early publication next year, evidence of an evolving transformation of entrepreneurial innovation in underserved communities which we believe will trigger conversations for a new and better future for all. I will share a few preliminary observations from that body of work as well as others on the need to embrace the coming transformation of opportunity creation through agile adaptability.
Our contributors in our forthcoming book, “The Future of Work & Entrepreneurship for the Underserved”, write from the perspective of countries in the US, Kenya, India, Pakistan, Chile, Philippines, Bangladesh, Japan, Viet Nam, Nigeria, and Mexico.
The Handbook will be compiled in the following Chapter sub-sections and we ask ourselves pertinent questions:
Section 1 Education and the Changing Dynamics for the Underserved- how will we learn, relearn and unlearn?
Section 2 Technology & Innovation for the Future of Work and Entrepreneurship-what new skill sets are required for these new workplaces and businesses?
Section 3 Small Business Development for the Future of Work and Entrepreneurship- How do we retool the new workforce?
Section 4 Diversity of Labor Markets: Creating Inclusivity for the Underserved- What strategies will ensure inclusivity and achievement of SDGs for the underserved?
Section 5 Summary and Recommendations-What roadmap, policies, and pathways will enhance the future of work and entrepreneurship that is tailored to align with underserved communities in different regions?
A few insights and observation from the book thus far:
- Post-COVID education will transform. It is transforming in both urban and rural areas globally sometimes swiftly and sometimes slowly… but it is transforming.
- The change of pace in technology is requiring up-skilling and re-framing of training of the worldwide labor force. The challenge will be how to give access to skill adjustments to those who don’t have access to education, training, or technology.
- Development of small entrepreneurial businesses focused on youth, women, and other target populations that may be displaced from the dynamics of the labor market. Solutions for migrant and other seasonal labor will be assessed for an alternative, productive, and socially just strategies.
- New ecosystems for government, corporate, academic, and community partnerships will replace the silo strategies of the past.
Humanity can and will transform to a better tomorrow as all stakeholders work together for increased productivity, labor will rise through entrepreneurial pursuits and the middle of the pyramid will broaden. We believe this discourse will trigger other conversations that will ensure the attainment of SDGs and inclusivity for underserved communities globally.
Storytelling of the international gig economy is best told by Farid, a young solo entrepreneur in Bangladesh:
In my presentation last year at this very same conference we discussed the Future of Teaching and Learning In the Unscaled Economy. We discussed the new skills needed to lead this new workforce and why must we be successful for the many silent voices in the middle and lower levels of the wealth pyramid that is growing flat. We talked about the unscaled economy.
As we go back to Farid, the technology-enabled him to reach worlds beyond his village. He had no mentors, managers, coaches… it was his sheer grit and determination for a better life that led him to a new life.
To view the content of the keynote in its entirety:
More information and links to all the keynotes and conference proceedings are provided on Facebook. Day one book launch on the new Brexit book, Day 2 included many additional exceptional presentations and the close of the conference.