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The future of work and learning in the age of the 4th industrial revolution

With the convergence of disruptive technologies, including nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, robotics, genetics, and 3D printing, the exponential shift that the fourth industrial revolution brings is altering almost every industry in the world. No part of society will be left untouched, including the education and workforce development sector’s role in preparing people for the future of work in this new world. This paper highlights the changing nature of work and how societies must embrace new or hybrid learning models to allow individuals and economies to thrive going forward. Without fundamental transformation in the way we think about lifelong learning and skill development, individuals, communities and whole economies will be left behind. The research for this paper includes a meta-analysis of academic sources and the Canadian edition also includes Colleges and Institutes Canada’s (CICAN’s) feedback and experience,. The paper seeks to further the debate of the evolution of learning in the 21st century and how we break down the barriers and transform learning so that everyone has the opportunity to succeed, and economies are better positioned to prosper.