United States | March 18, 2021

A grand challenge surfaces solutions to upskill Americans for the future of work

Jessica Pothering
ImpactAlpha Editor

Jessica Pothering

ImpactAlpha, March 18 – Technology is replacing people. Gig jobs are replacing full-time work. Unions are organizing (see, “Why pension funds and other Amazon investors are backing the workers in union battle“). And remote work is here to stay.

“No matter how you look at it, the future of work is now,” said Angela Jackson of venture philanthropy New Profit.

The venture philanthropy nonprofit is testing 15 early-stage solutions for upskilling American workers with 25,000 workers and $6 million in the Future of Work Grand Challenge. Five ventures from MIT Solve’s Reimagining Pathways to Employment challenge join 10 ventures from partner XPRIZE’s Rapid Reskilling Competition (see, “XPRIZE identifies 10 rising startups solving workforce challenges”).

From Solve: ChargerHelp! is employing local workers to monitor electric vehicle charging stations. The Last Mile is reskilling formerly incarcerated individuals. Generation USA offers a job training bootcamp. Centro App offers training for small businesses and new entrepreneurs grappling with the impacts of COVID. Arts2Work is developing apprenticeships for digital media and creative careers.

New Profit has recruited organizations in Dallas, San Diego, Western Michigan, Southeastern Virginia, Hartford, Conn. and Worcester, Mass. to test the interventions.