Future of Work Conference 2023 in Curacao 

SER: “A vision for innovation, inclusiveness and socioeconomic impact” 


Willemstad, October 17, 2023 – Organized by the Social and Economic Council (SER) of Curaçao, the “Future of Work in Curaçao – Technology, AI and Migration” conference was held at the auditorium of the Central Bank of Curaçao and Sint Maarten (CBCS) in Scharloo last Monday, October 16. The meeting, which was attended both physically by 145 participants and online by hundreds of interested parties via live streaming, offered innovative insights into Curaçao’s current socio-economic challenges. 

The Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, Mr. Sithree van Heydoorn, and Mr. Raul Henriquez, Director/General Secretary of the SER, highlighted themes that are closely intertwined with Curaçao society. Complementary to this, the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) highlighted the urgency of the themes using quantitative data. These data included the speed of digital transformation, with more than 65% of households connected to the Internet, and demographic trends such as aging and de-growth, with 148,925 residents as of January 1, 2023. 

The conference went beyond mere reflection and presented detailed analyses of future labor market trends. The focus was on diversification from the traditionally tourism-driven economy to emerging sectors such as IT, renewable energy, and the orange economy. The World Economic Forum’s most recent “Future of Jobs” report was cited. This estimates that 14% of the global workforce will have to change jobs by 2030 due to automation and digitalization. 

Research by the Curaçao Innovation & Technological Institute (CITI) highlighted a shift within the local financial sector to new job profiles such as Fintech specialists, Cybersecurity analysts and Data Scientists. In addition, CITI identified a growing need for software developers and data analysts in the local IT sector. 

The importance of a resilient education system that prepares young people for a rapidly changing job market was further emphasized. Specific attention was given to core skills that will be crucial for future employment. These skills include emotional intelligence, analytical thinking, active and efficient learning, problem solving, critical analysis, creativity, leadership, and technological proficiency. 

As a culmination of the conference, it was promised that all participants will be presented with a draft manifesto for input as soon as possible. This document will go beyond symbolism and will represent the collective will and commitment of all participants. A multi-stakeholder implementation structure will be responsible for turning this vision into concrete action plans. 

The day ended with a networking moment, which can be seen as a natural extension of the in-depth discussions that took place throughout the day. The conference can be viewed in full on Nos Pais Television, channel 4. For further information on the conference and future activities, visit the official SER website: