Future of Work

Accelerator

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Do you have an idea, solution, venture or initiative that improves job quality and economic security for workers and their families? Apply today to join the inaugural New Jersey Future of Work Accelerator to take your idea to the next level.

Accelerating Ideas that Support Workers!

The Future of Work Accelerator is a 9-month program that will support innovations that advance New Jersey’s workers’ health and safety, improve access to benefits, strengthen training opportunities, and bolster worker voice.

Through the Accelerator, participants will receive custom coaching, curated connections to national experts, introductions to funders and peers, and the opportunity to pilot worker-centric programs and practices in New Jersey.

The Accelerator is open to startups, entrepreneurs, non-profits, public sector institutions and employees, unions, and grassroots organizations from across the globe that are interested in promoting innovative solutions. See a list of themes that the Accelerator will address, below.

Perhaps you’ve developed a digital job coach that helps workers identify the best post-pandemic career opportunities, or a training program that teaches workers at risk of automation how to code, or an idea to build traction around universal basic income. Whether the innovation is technology-based or not, the Accelerator can help take it to the next level.

See a list of themes that the Accelerator will address, below.

Focus + Key Themes

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the economic insecurity of thousands of families, especially those in low-income communities and communities of color. At the same time, the pandemic has led to adaptive policy solutions, economic relief interventions, and other innovations that can be leveraged to create long-term support for segments of the workforce vulnerable to changes in the future of work.

The FOW Accelerator will focus on interventions that advance worker voice, wellbeing, and power. We are particularly interested in attracting applicants whose work touch upon the below themes:

  • Lifelong learning and re-skilling strategies
  • Financial Innovations that support economic security and resilience
  • Next generation approaches to strengthening worker voice, ownership and power
  • Enhancing employer practices ( e.g., workplace safety innovations, hazard pay, portable benefits)
  • Developing agile support systems that strengthen economic inclusions and navigation of opportunities

Who is This for

We strongly encourage applications from all backgrounds (local geographies, women, persons of color, low income communities, younger demographics (under 40s), LGBTQ, those who are disabled) and especially those with lived experience at the forefront of the future of work. 

We welcome applicants with ideas in all stages of development -- from early stage ideas to ventures in need of scaling. We also support intrapreneurs with ideas from historic and established organizations. Applicants can be from the public sector, the non-profit community or from the private sector. 

Additionally, organizations looking to scale to -- or localize in New Jersey from other regions are also encouraged to apply. We hope to use this competition to help root innovative ideas in New Jersey and can support scaling efforts by organizations based elsewhere as long as there is a strong commitment to design a fairer economy and positively impact the lives of New Jerseyans.

What are we solving for?
Who Should Apply
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Questions regarding the FOW Accelerator or the application process itself can be submitted via email to fow.accelerator@innovation.nj.gov. All questions and responses will be posted publicly on the Your Questions page, and be available to be viewed by all potential participants.

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