Scratch the surface of the ‘21st century skills’ brigade, & the justification you always seem to get revolves around serving the market/business/tech sector. Which is more dystopian (and properly Gradgrindian) than any school getting a bit over-zealous with a knowledge curriculum
Most people would accept that our education systems need to change to reflect the world around them. However, there isn't general agreement about what those changes might look like or indeed what the purposes of education should be in the automation age.
A traditional academic approach would be to carry out research and then publish findings in a refereed journal article. I have a number of concerns about that ...
academic research is often dependent upon external funding - which often distorts both the research focus and approach (and at times willingness to publish findings)
the process of publishing academic research findings is generally slow and what gets through the review process may be distorted by views of what counts as high quality research (e.g. by the metrics used in research assessment exercises such as the Research Excellence Framework (REF) in the UK)
we already have a great deal of evidence (from theory, practice and research) that is relevant to education - but much of these seems to be ignored. For example, research that I led looking at the implementation of the then government's Information Communication Technology (ICT) strategy concluded that