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Innovation for Jobs

Who is the i4j community

Founded on the understanding that people need to earn in order to spend, but almost all innovations are designed only to encourage spending. There is very little innovation for earning better and virtually no inno­vation for earning more that is accessible to all. i4j is changing this by developing and testing a framework of ideas for a people-centered economy, where companies raise the value of people above lowering costs. The goal is a sustainable innovation economy where people do meaningful work with people they like, creating value for people they may or may not know, and providing for the people they love.



Published Books

The i4j Innovation for Jobs community continues to pioneer how to use innovation to tailor education and jobs for all. i4j produces publications with contributors found within and outside of the i4j community to advance the body of knowledge. Publishing opportunities that create the best value from unique skills, talents, passions to provide in jobs and workforce innovation globally.


A job is a need. Innovation for jobs is a market.

In the world’s existing, task-centered economies, the aim is to minimize the cost of tasks through innovation that helps customers spend better, yet–a growing paradox–with people in manufacturing or service jobs replaced by machines. But people need to earn in order to spend. In a people-centered economy, designed to increase the innate value of people, a job is a customer need, as in when people say “I need a job”–paid work with a steady, reliable income, enabling people to raise families and live a decent life. Employment is the standard way of satisfying the customer’s need for a job, but innovation is opening many more possibilities. There is a market for innovative companies to offer customers good jobs where they earn better, in more meaningful ways. Thus what is widely seen as a current problem becomes instead a powerful, emerging opportunity for entrepreneurs: to transform underused human capacity into wealth distributed much more widely and evenly.

Five billion customers want a good job. 200 Million have one.

Of the five billion world citizens of working age, three billion want to work; most of them want a steady job, but barely a billion have one. Of these,, only two hundred million (13%) are ‘engaged’ (meaningfully involved) in their jobs. For every engaged worker, two hate their jobs and the rest are indifferent. This sad world workforce creates $75 trillion of market value (GDP) each year.

Innovation: jobs that match skills and engagement

“Disrupting Unemployment” postulates that innovative companies can help everyone find a job that matches their skills, talents and passions, teamed with people who engage them, finding mutual opportunities for what they do best. How much more value would five billion well-matched, inspired people create vs. today’s two hundred million engaged workers accompanied by four hundred million angry ones? A doubling in world GDP ($75 Trillion) is a conservative estimate. Add to that the increased well-being of people having a job and a team that engages them.

From pipe dream to real potential

Beyond the difference in self-actualization, well-being and sense of meaning, the concept of providing all earners with ‘tailored’ jobs has been science fiction. Smartphones, cloud computing, big data and other emerging technologies are making it possible. Summoning an innovation-for-jobs ecosystem around this vision, many companies are already linking recruiting, education, coaching, skills, matchmaking, HR and opportunity-creation in a long-tail labor market. We tested this in January with great success, and will continue to facilitate the innovation-for-jobs ecosystem, with entrepreneurs – both social and commercial, funders, policymakers, educators, experts.



i4j Ideas

Innovation for Jobs (i4j) has pioneered how innovation will tailor education and jobs for all, creating the best value from unique skills, talents, and passions. The potential market for innovation-for-jobs ecosystems is larger than the world economy until now. i4j provides the ideas for building innovation in the jobs, workforce and economies of the future.


i4j Gatherings

Innovation for Jobs (i4j) brings together innovors who tailor education and jobs for all; look for unique skills, talents, passions and potential markets for innovation-for-jobs ecosystems. i4j gathers together thought leaders to build outcomes for innovation-for-jobs economy globally.


Upcoming Gatherings

Know more about the upcoming gatherings and disccussion threads of i4j community

Current Gatherings

Check the current gatherings and discussion threads of i4j community

Past Gatherings

Here’s the list of successful past gatherings and videos of i4j community



Hello i4j Community Friend

Since 2013 i4j Innovation for Jobs has been a global leadership forum that partnered in 2022 with the People Centered Internet (PCI). We come together to connect, strive for collaborations, and learn from each other.

We invite you to join the i4j community listserve by emailing a request to join to: i4j@peoplecentered.net .

Cyndi Coon serves on the board of directors of the People Centered Internet where she leads the i4j (global workforce) and Coolabilities projects.

Guido van Nispen is Senior Fellow with PCI where he is involved in the i4j (global workforce) and Coolabilities projects.




Innovation for Jobs (i4j) is a global leadership forum. Originally organized by the IIIJ Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with headquarters in Silicon Valley in 2013. Innovation for Jobs (i4j) became a part of the People Centered Internet, 501(c)3 non-profit organization in Spring 2022. People Centered Internet dedicated a board member, Cyndi Coon (link to PCI profile) and a Fellow, Guido van Nispen (link to PCI profile) to continuing this robust community.

This concept and community were co-founded by Vint Cerf and David Nordfors in 2013. The community grew with events, publications, convenings and a robust email list serve.


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