Regardless of whether we are on the cusp of a technological singularity or not, advances in technology will continue to transform how people work. The technologies that appear particularly relevant are artificial intelligence, robotics, and automation because they have the potential of replacing human workers in an increasing number of fields.
In an influential scientific paper , Carl Benedikt Frey CBF Carl Benedikt Frey and estimated that 47% of US jobs are at risk of automation within a decade or two. The researchers identified employment categories at particular risk: transportation and logistics, office and administrative support workers, and labor in production occupations. Although Frey and Osborne’s predictions do not necessarily mean long-term mass-unemployment, humans will be less desirable employees for certain jobs than machines.
To remain competitive, and to give low- and high-skilled workers alike the best chance of success, economies need to offer training and career-focused education throughout people’s working lives.
–Special Report, The Economist
Such technological disruption is not new. Online travel booking made many travel agents obsolete. The rise of Amazon has challenged not only physical bookstores but also many other retailers. Companies like Uber and Airbnb are changing the landscape of transportation and hospitality. But disruption often creates new opportunities. When Automatic Teller Machines (ATM) began being installed at banks, bank tellers were not immediately redundant. Instead, the focus of their jobs changed.
The big challenge is to ensure people have the right knowledge and skills for the jobs of the future and that technological disruption does not lead to increased inequality within the population. Although it is difficult to prove that the pace of change is accelerating, it would be unwise not to prepare for a world that requires workers to have different knowledge and skills.
To keep up with the world of 2050, you will need to do more than merely invent new ideas and products, but above all, reinvent yourself again and again.
— Yuval Noah Harari YNH Yuval Noah Harari , Medium