One of the questions I often ask myself at two or three o’clock in the morning is what kinds of jobs are we going to have in the future?
OK, I know I need to get out more… But if we seriously think that life in the future is going to become much more local than it is today, then it’s not enough to make sure we have sustainable energy and local food. It’s not enough to make sure we make our communities stronger and more exciting. We also need find and create new jobs.
Now, I’m sure that the next 30 years are going to be as different from anything I can imagine now, as today is different from anything I could have imagined 30 years ago. But as one Farnham Transitioner overheard recently, there’s very little point in any student now starting out on a degree to become a petroleum engineer. And as Richard Morrison said in today’s Times newspaper, “I think we may be on the cusp of the most surprising social change in our lifetimes: a rediscovery of the pleasures to be had in thrift, in simplicity and in parochialism…”
So, with those two thoughts in mind, how about this list as a starter for some of the jobs my three children might like to do?
When I was a kid I can remember wanting to be a thatcher or a stone mason. I think I’d definitely rather do any of the jobs listed below than be a “hedge fund manager” or “junk mail marketing manager”.
Coppicers, hurdle makers, rake makers, fork makers, besom makers, handle makers, hoop makers, ladder makers, crib makers, broaches and peg makers, clog sole cutters, bodgers, charcoal burners, oak basket makers, trug makers, stick and staff makers, field gate makers, willow basket makers, net makers.
Stone masons, joiners, roofers, floor layers, wallers, thatchers, slaters, lime burners, paint makers, glass blowers, glaziers, stained glass artists, mud brick makers, tile makers, chimney sweeps, plumbers, decorators, bridge builders, French polishers, sign writers.
Hedge layers, dry stone wallers, stile makers, well diggers, peat cutters, gardeners, horticulturists, vintners, arborists, tree surgeons, foresters, farmers, shepherds, shearers, bee keepers, millers, fishermen, orchardists, veterinarians.
Chair makers, iron founders, blacksmiths, wheelwrights, coopers, coppersmiths, tinsmiths, wood turners, coach builders, boat builders, sail makers, rope makers, wainwrights, block makers, leather tanners, harness makers, saddlers, horse collar makers, boot and shoe makers, cobblers, clog makers, knife makers, cutters, millstone dressers, potters, printers, typographers, calligraphers, bookbinders, paper makers, furniture makers, jewellers, mechanics, boiler makers, boiler men, soap makers, gunsmith, sword smith, brush maker, candle maker, artist, sculptor, firework maker, cycle builder, bone carver, musical instrument maker, clay pipe maker, tool maker.
Spinner, weaver, dyer, silk grower, tailor, seamstress, milliner, hatter, lace maker, button maker, mat and rug maker, crochet worker, tatting and macramé worker, knitter, quilter, smock worker, embroiderer, leather worker, felt maker.
Fish smoker, bacon curer, butter maker, cheese maker, brewer, cider maker, wine maker, distiller, herbalist, ice cream maker, butcher, fishmonger, pie maker, pickle maker, baker, barrister and coffee roaster, homeopath, reflexologist, osteopath, naturopath, storyteller, teacher naturalist, historian, jester, actor, administrator, philosopher, labourer, poet, writer, midwife, publican, bookseller, librarian and idiot – there is no unemployment in this traditional model!
The source for this list? Today’s transition blog.