The workforce of the future: Solve-a-thon applications open

Robot (Jessie Hodge/Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Robot (Jessie Hodge/Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Written by Lisa Cornish

The beginning of the 21st century has been marked by rapid advances in technological innovation. While new technology can generate jobs and increase labour productivity, it also creates job displacement and widens the skills gap. Today’s generation of young people now face a world in which nearly half of today’s jobs globally are at risk of becoming obsolete due to automation and technological advancement in the coming decades.

DFAT is partnering with the Atlassian Foundation and MIT on a challenge to help young people prepare for the workforce of the future which offers grant funding to support the best ideas submitted. The challenge seeks to find the best innovative and scalable ideas which address the question: “How can disadvantaged youth learn the skills they need to prepare them for the workforce of the future and thrive in the 21st century?”

DFAT has committed up to AU$1.4m to the best ideas that impact developing countries in the Indo-Pacific region, with a particular focus on ideas that address the needs of women and girls, and people with a disability. Atlassian Foundation has committed up to US$1m to the best ideas from charities globally. The challenge is now open and will close on 1 August 2017.

To assist applicants with refining their ideas for this challenge, MIT, DFAT and the Atlassian Foundation will host local design thinking workshops, or “Solve-a-thons”, where participants will be able to workshop their ideas to strengthen the proposal before submission.

Atlassian is hosting Australia’s Solve-a-thon design thinking workshop at its offices in Sydney on July 7, together with MIT and DFAT.

Two types of attendees are invited to apply to participate in Solve-a-thons: intending applicants with a great idea who would like further assistance in strengthening their proposal; and contributors and influencers who will help shape these ideas.

Space is limited, so if you would to apply to attend, please complete this application form and submit it by Wednesday 21 June 2017.

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Lisa Cornish

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