Students predict world of work in 2040

Focus 2040 looks at expectations of future generations
By Amanda Silliker
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 05/06/2011

Walker Pearson, 40, is an executive in strategy and operation at a global automotive firm. He drives a programmable, hydrogen-fuelled car, uses artificial intelligence in his day-to-day life and places his overall happiness above everything else. He works whenever, and wherever, he wants and rarely goes to the office — those manual and laborious jobs are done by robo-employees anyways.

Pearson, a member of generation Z, is working in 2040 and is a figment of Ananya Datta’s imagination. Datta is this year’s winner of the Focus 2040 competition, held at McMaster University in Hamilton in March, with business students from across the country predicting the world of work in 2040.

“Students can take what they’ve learned in the classroom and apply it to the real world… They have to think about the practical implications of what they’re forecasting,” said Ezra Rosen, chairman of the Strategic Capability Network (SCNetwork) and co-founder of Focus 2040. “It’s getting them to think out of the box and use their creativity and imagination.”