Good Jobs & Inclusive Entrepreneurship
How can marginalized populations access and create good jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities for themselves?
NOTE: This Challenge is presented with the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy’s (IDE) Inclusive Innovation Challenge (IIC).
Automation, artificial intelligence, and other advanced technologies continue to rapidly transform the nature of work. Meanwhile, COVID-19 is expected to cause massive economic disruption, exacerbating the effects of these technological transformations. While the net impact of these trends over the long term remains uncertain, workers are contending with three undeniable challenges: jobs are quickly disappearing, some temporarily, others permanently; some jobs are precarious, with social safety nets and benefits disappearing in favor of contract and freelance work; and many jobs require changing skill sets. In particular, low-skilled, informal, and migrant workers are most at risk of being displaced through this looming recession and the technological transformations of work.
Yet even in the face of the COVID-19 crisis, these transformations still present opportunities for new businesses and jobs, such as elderly care or frontline health workers. However, only those equipped with the appropriate skills, resources, and networks can access these opportunities. The same countries where workers are struggling to keep or find good jobs also experience skills shortages and unfilled vacancies. This makes it essential to upskill and retrain workers to enable them to match employer demand or start their own venture. Further, when two-thirds of jobs worldwide are created by small and medium-sized businesses, supporting those traditionally underserved with access to capital, networks, and in-demand skills is key to creating opportunity and good jobs for entire communities.
The MIT Solve community is looking for technology-based solutions that spur good jobs and inclusive entrepreneurial opportunities. To that end, Solve seeks solutions that:
- Enable small and new businesses, especially in untapped communities, to weather economic shocks, prosper, and create good jobs through access to capital, networks, and technology.
- Support workers to advocate for and access living wages, social safety nets, and financial security in order to prepare for, withstand, and recover from economic shocks.
- Equip workers with technological and digital literacy as well as the durable skills needed to stay apace with the changing job market and economic downturns.
For more details on Solver Funding, Prize, and Partnership Eligibility for the Good Jobs & Inclusive Innovation Challenge, visit the Prizes tab.
Photo: Solver Moringa School