Future Jobs

Solving the Employment and Skills Crisis

by Edward E. Gordon
Foreword by Kevin Hollenbeck

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August 2013


Pages 203
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Business/Careers
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A pervasive disconnect exists between the job/career culture and the present economic reality in America. This book offers powerful strategies for stemming the employment crisis and proposes comprehensive solutions for businesses, government, and job seekers alike.

More than 30 million Americans are unemployed, underemployed, or have given up on looking for a job. Undoubtedly, the massive economic downturn after the financial crisis of 2007–2008 is a key factor in this situation. But the U.S. job market has stalled because our nation is failing to produce workers with the right skills, not because we cannot create enough jobs for the workers.

Future Jobs: Solving the Employment and Skills Crisis offers an economic and historical perspective on the evolution of jobs and careers, explains how technology has permanently altered the U.S. job/labor market, and provides practical information for businesses seeking qualified workers, educators preparing students for careers, unemployed or underemployed individuals, and those interested in changing careers.

The book examines the problem of the mismatch between individuals' skills and employers' job needs from the perspectives of both employers and employees or prospective employees, offering comprehensive regional solutions to the issues each group faces. The author reveals the most promising jobs and careers of the next decade for early-career job seekers and workers with established careers looking to change their path, and provides potential solutions to the jobs and skills disconnect in America, including education reform, business and government policy changes, and regional public-private partnerships.


    • Explains how the current job skills crisis stems from a broad structural failure of the education-to-employment system and has sweeping societal and economic consequences
    • Identifies the "hot jobs" of the current decade and the requisite skills and educational preparation needed to obtain them
    • Describes how digital technology has permanently altered the nature of the U.S. and global job/labor market
    • Provides information critical to a wide audience: businesses seeking to fill vacant jobs, community organizations and governments trying to attract new enterprises and retain current businesses, educators preparing students for careers, and students and parents concerned about job and career options
Author Info

Edward E. Gordon, PhD, is president of Imperial Consulting Corporation in Chicago, IL. His published works include Praeger's The 2010 Meltdown: Solving the Impending Jobs Crisis; FutureWork: The Revolution Reshaping American Business; and Literacy in America: Historic Journey and Contemporary Solutions. Gordon holds a doctorate in psychology and history from Loyola University Chicago.



"Edward Gordon brings a good deal of data, insight, and clarity to a hotly debated topic: the skills required by the workers of the Postindustrial Age. . . Future Jobs maps out the dimensions of an underappreciated crisis confronting not only the United States but also many of the world's developed and emerging economies: the rapidly growing shortage of adults who possess the basic skills to qualify for high growth, information-intensive jobs of what the author calls the age of 'cyber-mental work.' . . . Future Jobs makes a convincing case that there is an urgent need to provide tens of millions of U.S. workers—both the unemplyed and employed—with advanced cognitive skills. . . He concludes that the only effective means by which America can timely address its workplace skills crisis is through local initiatives: employers collaborating with educators, government, and civic leadership to provide millions of individuals with the specific skills required to perform the jobs of our Cyber-Mental Age."The Futurist

"Gordon, a business consultant, examines how the United States can reduce workforce skills shortages by offering comprehensive regional solutions. . . . Recommended."Choice

"With wisdom, integrity, compassion, and determination, Dr. Gordon identifies and analyzes the issues, and proposes with demonstrably workable solutions. Gordon concludes, 'As an optimist, I believe that American society's greater flexibility and dynamism will prevail as in past eras. My hope is that Future Jobs will inspire people in many walks of life to take a proactive role in shaping that new jobs and talent era.'"The National Career Development Association


"Edward Gordon's new book Future Jobs: Solving the Employment and Skills Crisis has brought a number of disciplines to the top macroeconomic problem of our day. His analysis provides a proper perspective of structural unemployment and the many avenues to address this problem. Gordon's book is a must-read for any serious policymaker and students looking at today's labor market."—John E. Silvia, Chief Economist, Wells Fargo

"Ed Gordon has effectively described the perfect storm—the Talent Cliff—as well as our safe harbor—RETAINs. In the United States we face an absolute crisis in education and training that can be absolutely flipped into the foundation for a truly sustainable society. His prescription for RETAINs gives us the kind of independent public-private partnership that's essential for success and overcoming the public and private sector silos that have prevented breakthroughs in education and workforce development. Future Jobs: Solving the Employment and Skills Crisis is an essential resource for community, educational, labor, governmental, and business leaders throughout the country."—Dan Swinney, Executive Director, Manufacturing Renaissance

"Edward Gordon's latest book is a stimulating read for all who care about jobs and skills. Ed's analysis impels his readers to consider a fresh take on the changing nature of work, the rising global demand for talent, and how we can make sense of the sometimes contradictory signals from labor market data, employers, and our education and training system. Most important, Future Jobs presents tangible solutions to the jobs challenge that offer real benefits to employers and workers alike."—Michael R. Bloom, Vice President, Organizational Effectiveness & Learning, The Conference Board of Canada

"Future Jobs is a wonderful resource for students to determine the most promising career paths. Gordon reminds us of the significant mismatch between the skills needed for careers and the content of much of our education. He provides a fine overview of employer needs in our rapidly changing competitive landscape."—Lewis Collens, President Emeritus, Illinois Institute of Technology


Bronze Medal in Business/Career/Sales — Independent Publisher

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