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Giving Compass' Take:
• In contrast to common fears that technological advancements will eliminate the need for human workers, Steven Brown and Pamela J. Loprest at Urban Institute explain that the demands in the workforce will change, not disappear.
• What can nonprofits and socially-conscious businesses do to prepare students for the future? Which programs would help current workers acquire new skills and training?
“The robots are coming.” “No jobs are safe.” “The way we work is coming to an end.”
These fears around automation and technology’s impact on jobs continue to grow as innovations have the potential to change the employment landscape. Although millions of jobs could be lost as a result of new technologies, millions of jobs will also be created (it’s still unclear whether there will be enough new jobs).
Concerns about robots, automation, and artificial intelligence (AI) miss that the advent of technology is more likely to change jobs, not eliminate them. In manufacturing, companies are experimenting with having floor and line workers use mechanical exoskeletons to reduce strain and fatigue when lifting heavy objects. And in sales, representatives will need to become more capable with online marketing and engagement to adapt to customer preferences.
Technology is changing the way we work, but concerns about which jobs are lost and which are gained — and who those changes affect — are important in considering whether people will have the opportunity to shift from working in the jobs of yesterday to the jobs of tomorrow.
Technological advancements are changing the way we work, reducing the need for some occupations and expanding the need for others. Jobs that aren’t experiencing rapid change in growth are still seeing rapid change in technological adoption, which requires workers in those fields to learn new skills.
Along with these changes could come advances in productivity, creating high-paying, high-quality employment for people in the position to take advantage of the growth of these good jobs. But there is also a risk, especially among those without advanced degrees, that people will lose jobs paying middle-class wages and get locked out of better jobs.
Read the full article about technological advancement by Steven Brown and Pamela J. Loprest at Urban Institute.