Employment and Jobs

Shaping the Future of Work: A Conversation About Quality Jobs

September 1, 2021  • Economic Opportunities Program

When the pandemic hit and the labor market cratered, headlines focused on the loss of jobs rather than the quality of jobs. But the dramatic increase in food insecurity, the prevalence of unsafe workplaces, the spotlight on racial injustice, and the moral questions raised by the meager wages and high risks of essential workers all underscore the need to improve job quality.

We cannot solve inequality, we cannot advance racial justice, and we cannot address the deep divisions in our society without making work work for everyone – which means that now, more than ever, we must invest in good jobs for everyone.

How do we ensure that the jobs we add back are not just jobs, but high-quality jobs providing a ladder to success for more workers?

  • Nafisah Ula, Organizing Director, Jobs with Justice @jwjnational
  • Rachel Korberg @RachelKorberg, Executive Director and Co-Founder, Families and Workers Fund @FamiliesWorkers
  • Rick Plympton, CEO, Optimax; Job Quality Fellow of the Aspen Institute
  • Alex Camardelle @AKCamardelle, Director, Workforce Policy Program, Joint Center for Political & Economic Studies @JointCenter


Rebuilding our economy isn’t just about creating jobs. It’s about creating QUALITY jobs. Join @PBS and @AspenFutureWork for a conversation about #jobquality and the #futureofwork. Wed, Sept 1, at 1 p.m. ET.

Sept 1: “Shaping the #FutureOfWork: A Conversation About Quality Jobs.” Feat Nafisah Ula (@jwjnational), @RachelKorberg (@FamiliesWorkers), Rick Plympton (Optimax), and @AKCamardelle (@JointCenter). Hosted by @AspenFutureWork and @PBS.

Throughout the pandemic, headlines have focused on the number of jobs lost or gained. But rebuilding our economy isn’t about job quantity. It’s about #jobQUALITY. Join @PBS and @AspenFutureWork on Sept 1 to talk about the #futureofwork.

Learn More

This is presented in partnership between PBS and the Institute’s Future of Work Initiative.

The Future of Work Initiative aims to identify, develop, and amplify solutions that address the challenges of today while building toward a future in which workers are safe, empowered, and equipped to thrive in our changing world. The Future of Work Initiative is an initiative of the Economic Opportunities Program.

The Economic Opportunities Program advances strategies, policies, and ideas to help low- and moderate-income people thrive in a changing economy. Follow us on social media and join our mailing list to stay up-to-date on publications, blog posts, events, and other announcements.