The Economist: Lifelong Learning an ‘Economic Imperative’

Higher Education

The Economist: Lifelong Learning an ‘Economic Imperative’

Jan 16, 2017

IN OUR MAILBOX: The Economist—journalism’s exemplar for wit, sense and tasteful pretense—dedicated its special report this week to lifelong learning, or “an economic imperative” in its words. The six articles hit on familiar themes we’ve explored—re-skilling and credentialing, among others—and feature familiar names including Udacity, Coursera, General Assembly and Pluralsight. One story claims MOOCs have returned, albeit with a focus on serving companies more so than schools. (Here’s Class Central CEO and founder Dhawal Shah’s breakdown of MOOCs in 2016.)

Yet for all the focus on learning how to code, or how to learn, social skills remain paramount. Citing research from Harvard professor David Deming, the authors argue companies will continue to reward “people who can divide up tasks quickly and effectively between them form more productive teams. If work in future will increasingly be done by contractors and freelancers, that capacity for co-operation will become even more important. Even geeks have to learn these skills.”

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