Different disciplines, different research fields, a broad range of methods. From numerous individual projects, the priority programme aims to generate deeper diagnoses and a more analytical understanding of the digitization of working environments. To achieve this, interdisciplinary understanding must grow.

And it is important to find connecting lines and points of contact. In order to make this concrete and lively, the priority programme organizes itself in three interdisciplinary clusters between the large joint retreats.

Labour Market – Inequality – Future

Digitization of the world of work worries many: How many jobs will be lost? Which tasks are susceptible? Is social inequality growing because labor markets are polarizing? Or are many new and creative activities and professions emerging? The cluster “Labour Market – Inequality – Future” looks at such societal and supra-company aspects (macro level). The projects in this cluster examine changing labor markets and qualifications as well as the genesis of occupational profiles and the challenges facing institutional actors in the labor market. And they ask about different levels of concern, because not everyone is equally affected by these dynamics. Longer-term trends and the question of how forecasts can be made at all in a transformative process link the perspectives of the individual projects.

Governance – Control – Autonomy

The digitalization of working environments is also changing the relationship between different social groups within organizations. The cluster “Governance – Control – Autonomy” deals with questions of the structuring of work, service and production processes and the associated social relationship of company actors (meso level). Specifically, the projects investigate new areas of tension between autonomy and freedom of action on the one hand and increasing transparency and control on the other. Where the rhythm of work processes, activities and access to the (whole) person at work are changing, this also has consequences for the relationship between managers and employees, between platform operators and crowd workers, between management and interest groups.

Work – Workplace – Collaboration

The digitization of the world of work is changing work in a very tangible way. Tasks and work processes are changing. The interaction between humans and AI or humans and robots must be designed. And last but not least, digitization is shaping and dynamizing collaboration between people, cooperation in and between teams, and collaboration across space and time. The cluster “Work – Workplace – Collaboration” deals with these changes within companies and organizations - from the individual workplace (micro level) to the shaping and changing socio-technical structures in and between functional areas and organization.

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