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纽约时报双语:大流行后,迎接一场教育和工作革命

大流行后,迎接一场教育和工作革命
After the Pandemic, a Revolution in Education and Work Awaits
托马斯·弗里德曼
2020年10月22日
纽约时报双语:大流行后,迎接一场教育和工作革命

The good Lord works in mysterious ways. He (She?) threw a pandemic at us at the exact same time as a tectonic shift in the way we will learn, work and employ. Fasten your seatbelt. When we emerge from this corona crisis, we’re going to be greeted with one of the most profound eras of Schumpeterian creative destruction ever — which this pandemic is both accelerating and disguising.

上天的安排很神秘。就在我们将来学习、工作和就业的方式发生结构性变化的时候,上天给我们降下来一场大流行病。系好安全带吧。当我们从这场新冠危机中走出来时,迎接我们的将是有史以来最深刻的一个熊彼特式的创造性毁灭时代,而这场大流行病既在加速,也在掩饰这个时代的到来。

No job, no K-12 school, no university, no factory, no office will be spared. And it will touch both white-collar and blue-collar workers, which is why this election matters so much. How we provide more Americans with portable health care, portable pensions and opportunities for lifelong learning to get the most out of this moment and cushion the worst is what politics needs to be about after Nov. 3 — or we’re really headed for instability.

没有工作,中小学的教室都空着,大学校园也空空如也,工厂停工,办公室关门。白领工人和蓝领工人都将受到这场大流行病的影响,这就是为什么这次总统大选如此重要的原因。我们如何为更多的美国人提供可转移的医疗保险、可转移的养老金,以及终身学习的机会,充分利用这个时刻,缓冲其最坏后果,是11月3日之后的政治需要解决的问题,否则我们真的将要走向不稳定。

The reason the post-pandemic era will be so destructive and creative is that never have more people had access to so many cheap tools of innovation, never have more people had access to high-powered, inexpensive computing, never have more people had access to such cheap credit — virtually free money — to invent new products and services, all as so many big health, social, environmental and economic problems need solving.

大流行病后的时代之所以将具有如此大的破坏性和创造性,是因为从来没有这么多人有机会使用如此之多的廉价创新工具,从来没有这么多人有机会获得高性能、廉价的计算能力,从来没有这么多人有机会得到如此廉价的信贷——几乎无息的资金——来发明新产品和新服务,而且是在健康、社会、环境和经济方面有如此之多的重大问题需要得到解决的时候。

Put all of that together and KABOOM!

把所有这些放在一起会发生迸发!

You’re going to see some amazing stuff emerge, some long-established institutions, like universities, disappear — and the nature of work, workplaces and the workforce be transformed.

人们将看到一些惊人的东西出现,看到一些历史悠久的机构(如大学)消失,也将看到工作性质、工作场所和劳动力的改变。

I’ve been discussing this moment with Ravi Kumar, the president of the Indian tech services company Infosys, whose headquarters is in Bangalore. Because Infosys helps companies prepare for a digital world, I’ve always found it a source of great insight on global employment/education trends. I started my book “The World Is Flat” there in 2004. Back then, Infosys’ main business was doing work that American companies would outsource to India. Today, Kumar operates from New York City, where he’s creating thousands of jobs in America. How could that be?

我一直在和拉维·库马尔(Ravi Kumar)讨论这个问题,他是总部设在班加罗尔的印度技术服务公司印孚瑟斯(Infosys)的总裁。因为印孚瑟斯帮助企业为数码世界做准备,我总是将其作为深入了解全球就业/教育趋势的信息来源。我2004年是在那里开始写《世界是平的》(The World Is Flat)这本书的。当时,印孚瑟斯的主要业务是承接美国公司外包给印度的工作。如今,库马尔从纽约经营业务,他正在为美国创造数以千计的就业机会。怎么会是这样呢?

It starts with the fact, explained Kumar, that the Industrial Revolution produced a world in which there were sharp distinctions between employers and employees, between educators and employers and between governments and employers and educators, “but now you’re going to see a blurring of all these lines.”

库马尔解释说,这始于一个事实,即工业革命产生的是一个雇主与雇员之间、教育工作者与雇主之间、政府与雇主和教育工作者之间有明显界限的世界,“但是现在人们将看到所有这些界限变得模糊。”

Because the pace of technological change, digitization and globalization just keeps accelerating, two things are happening at once: the world is being knit together more tightly than ever — sure, the globalization of goods and people has been slowed by the pandemic and politics, but the globalization of services has soared — and “the half-life of skills is steadily shrinking,” said Kumar, meaning that whatever skill you possess today is being made obsolete faster and faster.

由于技术变革、数字化和全球化的步伐不断加快,有两件事情正在同时发生:一是世界正在被比以往任何时候都更加紧密地联系起来——尽管大流行病和政治让货物和人员的全球流动放缓,但服务业的全球化速度迅猛;二是“技能的半衰期不断缩短”(用库马尔的话说),意思是不管你今天拥有什么技能,它淘汰的速度都越来越快。

Your children can expect to change jobs and professions multiple times in their lifetimes, which means their career path will no longer follow a simple “learn-to-work’’ trajectory, as Heather E. McGowan, co-author of “The Adaptation Advantage,” likes to say, but rather a path of “work-learn-work-learn-work-learn.”

你的子女们会在一生中多次改变工作和职业,这意味着他们的职业道路将不再沿着简单的“学习然后工作”的轨迹,如《The Adaptation Advantage》一书的共同作者希瑟·E·麦高文(Heather E. McGowan)喜欢说的那样,而是沿着“工作-学习-工作-学习-工作-学习”的轨迹。

“Learning is the new pension,” Ms. McGowan said. “It’s how you create your future value every day.”

“学习是新的养老金,”麦高文说。“是你每天如何创造未来价值的方法。”

The most critical role for K-12 educators, therefore, will be to equip young people with the curiosity and passion to be lifelong learners who feel ownership over their education.

因此,中小学教育工作者最重要的作用是培养年轻人的好奇心和热情,让他们成为做自我教育主人翁的终身学习者。

Obviously, everyone still needs strong fundamentals in reading and writing and math, but in a world where you will change jobs and professions several times, the self-motivation to be a lifelong learner will be paramount.

显然,每个人仍需要在阅读、写作和数学上打下牢固的基础,但在一个人们会多次改变工作和职业的世界里,成为一个终身学习者的自我激励将非常重要。

Parallel to that, explained Kumar, accelerations in digitization and globalization are steadily making more work “modular,’’ broken up into small packets that are farmed out by companies. Companies, he argues, will increasingly become platforms that synthesize and orchestrate these modular packets to make products and services.

与此同时,库马尔解释说,数字化和全球化的加速正在逐渐将越来越多的工作“模块化”,工作将被分解为公司可以外包出去的小模块。他认为,公司将越来越多地成为用合成和协调这些模块来制造产品和服务的平台。

In the process, Kumar added, “work will increasingly get disconnected from companies, and jobs and work will increasingly get disconnected from each other.’’ Some work will be done by machines; some will require your physical proximity in an office or a factory; some will be done remotely; and some will be just a piece of a task that can also be farmed out to anyone, anywhere.

库马尔补充说,在这个过程中,“工作将越来越多地与公司脱离,工作岗位和工作也将越来越多地彼此脱离”。有些工作将由机器来完成;有些工作将要求人在办公室或工厂里近距离完成;有些工作将远程完成;有些将只是一个任务的一部分,可以外包给任何地方的任何人。

As more work becomes modular, digitized and disconnected from an office or factory, many more diverse groups of people — those living in rural areas, minorities, stay-at-home moms and dads and those with disabilities — will be able to compete for it from their homes.

随着越来越多的工作变得模块化、数字化,与办公室或工厂脱离,更多不同群体的人——那些生活在农村地区的人、少数民族、全职妈妈和爸爸,以及残疾人——都将能够从自己家中竞争这些工作。

The reason Kumar now operates from New York is that he sees a huge new market in helping U.S. companies to prepare for this world by identifying potential new employees with skills — whether or not they have college degrees — then pairing them with new pathways of online training and pairing companies with these new talent pools. Every big company is going through this now — or will. Even The New York Times!

库马尔目前从纽约运营的原因是,他在帮助美国公司为他所描述的世界做准备上看到了一个巨大的新市场,他要帮助公司找到有技能的潜在新员工——不管他们是否有大学学位——然后将他们与在线培训的新途径匹配起来,将公司与这些新的人才资源匹配起来。每个大公司现在或将来都要经过这个过程。甚至是《纽约时报》!

Look at the list of online opinion writers for The Times: It’s radically different from when I became a columnist in 1995, when you had to be a staff employee. Today we have full-time staff columnists; columnists who are not on the staff but contribute regularly from all over the world, and on many days, one-time contributors. The people who moderate the comments on our columns are workers who plug in from all over the world, and much of the art is provided by freelancers. My longtime copy editor is working from home.

看看网上为时报写评论的作者名单吧:它与1995年我当上专栏作家时的截然不同,那时你需要成为一名全职员工。今天,我们有全职专栏作家,也有不是员工但经常从世界各地给时报写评论的专栏作家,很多时候还有一次性的撰稿人。主持我们专栏的读者评论的是来自世界各地的工作人员,而且大部分的图像制作是由自由职业者提供的。长期为我做文字编辑的人现在在家里上班。

Welcome to the Times orchestra.

欢迎来到时报团队。

This is already having a big impact on education. “We have started hiring many people with no degrees,’’ explained Kumar. “If you know stuff and can demonstrate that you know stuff and have been upskilling yourself with online training to do the task that we need, you’re hired. We think this structural shift — from degrees to skills — could bridge the digital divide as the cost of undergraduate education has increased by 150 percent over the last 20 years.’’

这已经给教育带来了巨大的影响。“我们已经开始雇许多没有学位的人,”库马尔解释道。“如果你知道东西,并能证明你知道东西,而且通过在线培训已经提高了你完成我们所需任务的技能的话,你会被录用。我们认为,这种从学位到技能的结构性转变可以缩小数字鸿沟,因为本科教育的成本在过去20年里增长了150%。”

Infosys still hires lots of engineers. But today Kumar is not looking just for “problem solvers,’’ he says, but “problem-finders,’’ people with diverse interests — art, literature, science, anthropology — who can identify things that people want before people even know they want them.

印孚瑟斯仍然雇佣许多工程师。但今天,库马尔要找的不只是“解决问题的人”,他说,而是“发现问题的人”,也就是对艺术、文学、科学、人类学等等有广泛兴趣的人,他们能在人们知道自己想要什么之前找到人们想要的东西。

Steve Jobs was the ultimate problem-finder.

史蒂夫·乔布斯(Steve Jobs)是终极的发现问题者。

Now so many more people can play at that, because you no longer need to know how to code to generate new software programs. Thanks to artificial intelligence, there is now “no-code software.’’ You just instruct the software to design some code for the application that you’ve imagined or need and, presto, it will spit it out.

现在,越来越多的人能来干这种工作,因为人们不再需要知道如何编写代码,就能生成新的软件程序。因为人工智能,现在有了“无代码软件”。你只需告诉软件为你心目中的或需要的应用程序设计一些代码,它马上就会把这些代码吐出来。

“We’re seeing the democratization of software — the consumers can now be the creators,’’ Kumar explained. It shows you how AI will take away jobs of the past, while it creates jobs of the future.

“我们正在看到软件的民主化——消费者现在也能是创造者,”库马尔解释说。这向人们展示了人工智能将如何夺走过去的就业机会,同时创造未来的就业机会。

Finally, he argues, in the future, postsecondary education will be a hybrid ecosystem of company platforms, colleges and local schools, whose goal will be to create the opportunity for lifelong “radical reskilling.”

最后,他认为,未来的高等教育将是一个由公司平台、大学和当地学校组成的混合生态系统,其目标将是为终身的“彻底再培训”创造机会。

“Radical reskilling means I can take a front-desk hotel clerk and turn him into a cybersecurity technician. I can take an airline counter agent and turn her into a data consultant.”

“彻底再培训的意思是,我能把一名酒店前台工作人员变成网络安全技术人员。我能把一名航空公司的值机代理变成数据顾问。”

Today, companies like Infosys, IBM or AT&T are all creating cutting-edge in-house universities — Infosys is building a 100-acre campus in Indianapolis designed to provide their employees and customers not “just-in-case learning’’ — material you might or might not need to master the job at hand — but “just-in-time learning,’’ offering the precise skills needed for the latest task, explained Kumar.

今天,像印孚瑟斯、IBM或AT&T这样的公司都在创建先进的内部大学——印孚瑟斯正在印第安纳波利斯建设一个占地100英亩的校园,为员工和客户提供“适时学习”,而不是“以防万一的学习”——学习你为掌握手头工作可能会也可能不会需要的东西,为人们提供完成最新任务所需的确切技能,库马尔解释道。

In the future, lifelong learning will be done by what I call “complex adaptive coalitions.’’ An Infosys, Microsoft or IBM will partner with different universities and even high schools, argues Kumar. The universities’ students will be able to take just-in-time learning courses — or do internships — at the corporations’ in-house universities, and company employees will be able to take just-in-case humanities courses at the outside universities. Both will be able to “learn, earn and work,’’ all at the same time. It’s already beginning.

在未来,终身学习将通过我所说的“复杂的适应联合体”来实现。库马尔认为,印孚瑟斯、微软或IBM等公司将与不同的大学甚至高中合作。大学生们将能够在公司的内部大学里学习适时学习课程或实习,而公司员工将能够在公司外的大学里学习以防万一的人文课程。学生和员工都将能同时“学习、赚钱和工作”。这已经开始了。

There is great potential here — if it is done right. The students get exposed to what is most new by way of innovation technologies and techniques. And the company engineers and executives get exposed to what is most enduring — civics, ethics, theories of justice, principles of democracy, notions of the public good, environmentalism and how to lead a life of purpose.

如果做对了的话,这里有巨大的潜力。学生们通过创新技术和工艺可以接触到最新的东西。公司的工程师和高管们则能学习最持久的东西——公民学、伦理学、各种正义理论、民主制度的原则、公共利益的观念、环保主义,以及如何让生活有意义。

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