Asia Pacific is one of the most dynamic regions in the world yet its workforce population is aging fast. Since the 2008 financial crisis, productivity growth of some of the region’s economies have been decelerating while changes on its technology front have been accelerating at an unprecedneted rate. Technological advances will surely reshape the future of work in the region. To better understand and harness the potential of new technologies in hopes of benefiting senior workers while equipping the younger ones with the necessary tools for their own future work, “Technology and Aging Workforce, Maximize the Gains from Longevity and Long Working Life”-themed meeting was held on May 17-18, 2018 at APRU member institution Korea University’s Asiatic Research Institute.
Over the course of the two-day meeting experts and scholars discussed a number of demography and technology-related topics, such as aging, demographic change and growth in Asia; aging, labor force participation, productivity and growth; the role of technology in aging workforce; demographic change, technology and its implication in Developing Asia; and regional collaboration on human capital development and cross-border labor mobility.
At the workshop John Piggott and Rafal Chomik, representing the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Aging Research (CEPAR) at UNSW, both presented and contributed to the meeting by drawing on the CEPAR/APRU working paper, Demographic and Technological Change: Two megatrends shaping the labour market in Asia. The paper was developed in collaboration with the ADB and informed to a great extent the ADB report Tapping Technology to Maximize the Longevity Dividend in Asia published in May 2018.
The event, jointly organized by APRU, ADBInstitute, Asiatic Research Insititute of Korea University, and ADB, served as an inception workshop, which aimed not only to evaluate the impact of demographic change and assess technology substitution effects on labor productivity; more specifically on youth and aging workforces, but also to discuss the education and training needs, and the role of regional cooperation in addressing the challenges associated with the impact of demographic change and coping with technological advancement.