China is not unlike others, many of the highly educated middle income class in cities has to contend in the post industrial revolution era that seeks to replace old jobs in the urban economy with new one defined by dominance of digital age, newly created jobs mostly associated with 4G enabled sharing economies appeared as quickly as they became redundant over a short time span and white collars employees being made redundant multiple times in their entire shortening career lifespan as a result has becoming a norm in the labor market, arming with tertiary education alone is no longer being the magic bullet for a resilient and rewarding life-ong income earning capability as valuable hard skillsets are inevitably being replaced by Artificial Intelligent, technologies and automation, not to mention having to compete with the 7 to 8 million of new graduates entering the workforce every single year coupled with lengthening productive life span China’s health care system had impressively achieved over the past decades.
Knowledge is power. –Francis Bacon
Indeed, destructive innovation related jobs restructuring is exacerbating individual crisis and stretching family, society and confident to breaking point and China didn’t have the comprehensive protection infrastructure as in mature western Europe where basic welfare help alleviating the challenging situations in between jobs through unemployment benefits and accessibility to fundamental healthcare and education. The digital revolution in China is already disrupting its drive to drastically closing the income inequality gap. The efforts was central on administration plan to transform to resilient and healthy economic stage for social stability which is in limbo as massive unfulfilled potentials for millions of highly educated young Chinese in the new online and mediated era may further inflame social tensions where good paying jobs took on a whole new dimensions. In addition, the imbalanced academic appropriation of typical Chinese household resources for tertiary education is inimical to the contributing of meaningful useful members of the society that are anchored in Confucius values of holding highest regards to the higher echelon of the community where it had been proven effective in the past to improve social mobility with better lives but it had outlived its purpose and become irrelevant in the new and dynamic labor force in the cities.
State level realignment of resources to better prepared their millions of inspiring youngster for jobs in the new urban economy is of paramount important to have far reaching impact and it’s already happening in other more matured places such as in United State and Taiwan. For example, recruitment based on actual skillsets strength rather than having college degree as prerequisite for the US corporations in an efforts to diversify their workforce. Also, many inspiring young Taiwanese generation had begun to see and started embracing the values of mastering of crafts in the area of interests; hair stylists, tool makers, breweries, interior designers, renovation contractors and so on as community going through the paradigm shifts of having low regards to these once considered low paid and low status jobs to a sexy one with decent career path where authenticity, creativity, soul enriching and personal touches are being sought after in the market with the same if not more promising rewards for the tier 1 performers and comfortable enough even for the next tiers.
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” ― Aristotle
More options need to be feasible for sizeable highly educated and skilled knowledge workers to be free lancers providing multiple contracts based services to defy past social norms as many new generation consumers grew tiresome of non-differentiating digital mass offering once thought that will rule the world, new customers craves for uniqueness, vibrancy, interaction and originalities of which online platforms can only compliment rather than replacement. Majority of Chinese living in the post materialistic world where most if not all the essential needs are already being fulfilled are asking for more and the new breed of product of services arising will be the fuels to continue to drive the sharing and Gig economy. The inevitable evolutionary labor trend where jobs and locations are liberated with digital mobilisation, unprecedented flexibility and optimised matching of the employers and workers to maximise resources and offering of work life balance and fully utilising one’s potential and mastery of crafts.
“Energy and persistence conquer all things.” — Benjamin Franklin
For example, a certified property agent juggling between viewing appointments with potential clients, fetching young children from kindergarten as an Uber driver in between and and generating sponsored product reviews online on top of managing a web store with bare minimum stockpiles is having multiple source of non-interest conflicting incomes while still enjoying decent stated provided or self-purchased affordable medical and insurance coverage. He or she is basically free lancer making a decent living providing services both physically or thru internet but all managed through third party online platforms like Uber, AirBnB, Elance and so on.
In addition, Germany and Japanese’s consistency of emphasising on vocation and crafts had paid off with thousands of local companies with more than 100 to 200 years in operation and wide deployment of discipleship in variety of trades had to a large extent shielded them from the radical structural employment landscape and their pursue of excellent and attention to details are legendary at all time earning respects and providing highest ever personal gratification derive from the satisfying jobs fully stretching individual potential with inclusive system where even those at the lowest hierarchy (Bus driver, dumpster assistance, service crews, janitors and etc) had pride in what they do, enjoying a non depriving and respectful lifestyle.
“The supreme accomplishment is to blur the line between work and play.” – Arnold J. Toynbee
In summary, China, generating the highest annual new graduates in Asia, aims to bring down skillset mismatch in the labor market as the country grapples increasing income inequality, undermining domestic consumption with social cases that have highlighted rampant unemployment, yet again, it’s notoriety as a pressure cooker society. Social incidents, in particular, sparked much soul reaching and spurred the authority to find ways to reduce the social tensions and unrealistic high monetary return expectation on tertiary education. Anxiety level is all time high with 3 decades of impressive economic progress with inevitable widening income inequality which is the characteristic of market driven markets, state level intervention to balance the growth and stability, creating a space with free market force to capitalise on the productivity and efficiency and yet having a comprehensive fundamental safety nets for the deprived and disadvantages; basic job market, housing, medical and eduction resources, preparing and giving the younger generation of Chinese best possible opportunities to thrive in the new economy with resilient, creativity, mastery of craft, appreciation of originalities, boldness, aggressiveness and ample room for navigating and trial and errors, in fact, China is already leading the way in taking advantage of the technologies and wide adoption of smartphones and with their massive domestic markets as backbone in creating unprecedented new product and services in online payments, shared rides, automated unman convenient stores, shared home-cook foods.