The Silver Innovation. Older workers characteristics and digitalisation of the economy
No 40, Working Papers from ASTRIL - Associazione Studi e Ricerche Interdisciplinari sul Lavoro
The current trends in the ageing of the work-force, which are only in part counterbalanced by immigration flows, risk to expose European enterprises to a widespread situation of skills shortage, together with the loss of a huge wealth of knowledge and experience, as a consequence of baby boomers retirement. In this context, the automation/digitalisation of production represents one of the main tools in the hands of advanced economies and organizations to react to the shrinking of the labour force, while boosting productivity and containing costs. The paper attempts to provide an initial framing of the problematic relationship which intervenes between digital innovation and employability of older workers. The discussion will offer a possible interpretation of on-going transformations and a provisional explanation of the current situation in Italy. The contribution will summarize the most important demographic transformations which affected the labour market during these years, in the light of the (potentially) disruptive spread of digital technologies. The topic of the digital evolution of jobs’ task content and its influence on training needs will be addressed. Reflections concerning the relationship between the adoption of technological innovation and the quality of human capital will be presented and some hypothesis concerning the recent evolution of employers’ attitudes towards older workers, about facing technological innovation, will be suggested.
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