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Work in the Twenty-First Century

Most of the reading public will have encountered scholarly predictions about the "future of work," and yet the most important elements of the debate lie in the past. As three recent books by leading economists show, understanding the history of technological change is crucial for anticipating what it will mean for employment in the decades ahead. 

OXFORD – Work! It consumes much of our lives and energy. But how we work and what we get from it have changed dramatically over time, and, as all three books under review here show, further radical shifts are on the horizon. As is to be expected of books about the future of work in the twenty-first century, there are common themes – automation, globalization, inequality. But each also brings something original to the table.