Eight ideas for a new social contract
This report argues that the twin challenges of economic insecurity and labour-market transforming technologies require a new blueprint social contract for good work. We identify five good work principles, consistent with our values and research findings, that should be enjoyed by all:
- Security – all should enjoy work that provides enough economic security to participate equally in society
- Wellbeing – all should enjoy work that does not harm their wellbeing
- Growth – all should enjoy work that grows and develops their capabilities
- Freedom – all should enjoy work that provides the freedom to pursue a larger life
- Subjective nurture – all should enjoy work that nurtures their subjective working identity
From this, we developed a process for designing a new blueprint social contract to meet these ambitions.
The central aim of our new social contract is a transfer of responsibility away from individuals: we believe individuals should enjoy good work as a right and that it is the responsibility of all the other institutions involved in work to help them secure the five good work principles. In the long run, we believe the lion’s share of this responsibility should move towards worker voice organisations, principally trade unions.
This shift is not just about amplifying worker power. Stronger worker voice organisation can also lead to a more flexible and dynamic capitalism. A more ‘corporatist’ model of capitalism, grounded in a stronger stakeholder relationship between workers, unions and employers, can lead to a social contract that is both more resilient and where firms face less regulatory red tape.
We advocate eight ideas that we hope can form the basis of a new social contract for good work.
Download A Blueprint for Good Work (pdf, 10.1 MB)
Join our community and help shape change in a post-Covid world.
Retail therapy: towards a future of good work in retail
This snapshot paper summarises our enquiry into the future of retail. We explore possible future challenges and opportunities for the sector and outline a set of prototype policy and practice interventions, developed in partnership with major retailers, policy makers and wider civil society.
Work in an age of radical technologies
Benedict Dellot and Fabian Wallace-Stephens introduce the Future Work Centre with a glimpse into what the world of work might look like in the future
Measuring good work
The final report of the Measuring Job Quality Working Group with Carnegie UK Trust