Creating the Ministry of Future

Posted: March 20, 2013 in Ministry of Future

Ministry of Future

Earlier this year we were asked to put our connected thoughts together and consider one of the biggest questions facing every parent, employer and Government official: how do we prepare young people for the opportunities and demands of the 21st Century?

Those that know us well understand that we are not intellects, nor do we profess to be experts, but if you dig around a bit and join up the dots, it is easy to see there is a real issue facing this country.  Whether or not you’re one of those that belief that we still teach children our pasts and not their futures, there is no denying that the world is undergoing a massive transition – socially, politically and economically –  all of which is affecting the prospects of the next generation of workforce.    The impact of technology, shifts in economic powers and trends, such as outsourcing, or automating, traditional right-brain ‘knowledge work’ to other countries, especially Asia, have left many Western countries facing skills shortages in key areas. The education system stands accused, by some, of not adapting to these new demands.  Many believe that young people and teachers need greater awareness of the job prospects that now exist in industry, and greater knowledge of how industry works and what working  in industry might entail.  Universities and Employers are also saying that schools should be focusing, as much, on the development of the softer skills needed in life, such as communication and team work; placing these in real – world context so that students can understand why they are important.   The issue is so important, where do you begin?

The beginning

When we sat down to begin the design process, we set out to compliment academic studies with a unique approach to bring industry closer to schools, helping the development of key, industry- relevant, life skills that would provide context to learning.  We wanted to use digital, not as a destination for the experience, but as a facilitator of the experience.   The experiences needed to be real, taking place within the school, amongst fellow students and the surrounding community.  We wanted to create something that would help young people reflect on the meaning and mission of their lives, building the self-belief, confidence and determination needed to achieve personal satisfaction and professional success in whatever they chose to do.  And most important of all, we wanted to create a destination that could unlock multiple experiences, each tailored to a specific industry, skill or purpose.  The Ministry of Future (MoF) was born.

Over the coming days, I will update the blog to detail what we did, why we did it and give examples of the possible opportunities.

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