Study 25 Percent of US Workers At Risk of Job Automation

first_img The robot revolution is coming.A new report from the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings Institute calculates automation’s “sizable” impacts on the future of the American workforce.It won’t be an even spread, according to co-authors Mark Muro, Robert Maxim, and Jacob Whiton, who dug deep into the data to explore variations by industry, geography, and demographics.Demographic variationYoung workers, men, and underrepresented groups (particularly Hispanics and African-Americans) will face pronounced difficulties as a result of automation’s disruptions.Male employees, for instance, account for a majority of jobs in production, transportation, and construction-installation—areas with above-average projected exposure.Male workers appear noticeably more vulnerable to potential future automation than women do (via Brookings Institute)Geographic unevennessSome locations will deal better than others with the coming transitions. Las Vegas, Nev., Louisville, Ky., and Toledo, Ohio, are among the most susceptible to takeover. Coastal giants like Washington, D.C., California’s Bay Area, New York City, and Boston, meanwhile, are much safer bets.Small university towns like Charlottesville, Va., and Ithaca, N.Y., or state capitals such as Bismarck, N.D., and Santa Fe, N.M., also appear “relatively well-insulated,” according to the study.Smaller, more rural communities are significantly more exposed to automation-driven task replacement (via Brookings Institute)Varying levels of occupational susceptibilityBy 2030, 25 percent of U.S. employment will have experienced what’s known as “high exposure” to AI in the workplace. Another 36 will face “medium exposure,” and the remaining 39 “low exposure.”It’s not as bad as it sounds, though: Those with greater than 90 percent automation potential represented only 4 percent of U.S. jobs in 2016. Tasks projected to be 100 percent automatable account for a measly 0.5 percent of the workforce.Almost no occupation will be unaffected by the adoption of currently available technologies (via Brookings Institute)Education helps combat automationThose jobs that depend on predictable physical and cognitive tasks are most vulnerable. That includes office administration, production, transportation, and food preparation—fields where machine control is already taking over.Meanwhile, folks working in complex, “creative” professional and technical roles that require higher education, or personal care and domestic service that demand social and emotional intelligence can breathe easy—for now.Near-future automation potential will be highest for roles that now pay the lowest wages (via Brookings Institute)“The next phase of automation, increasingly involving AI, seems like it should be manageable in the aggregate labor market, though there are many sources of uncertainty,” study co-author Muro said in a statement.“With that said, the potential effects will vary significantly across occupations, regions, and demographic groups, which means that policymakers, industry, and society as a whole needs to focus much more than they are on ensuring the coming transitions will work for all of those affected.”More on Geek.com:‘Robo-Nose’ Made From Mouse Cells Could Replace K-9 OfficersRobots to Build Robots at Shanghai Factory11 Robots That Are Going to Steal Your Jobs, Man Evan Rachel Wood Just As Disturbed by Humanoid Sophia As Everyone ElseMIT’s Thread-Like Robot Slides Through Blood Vessels In the Brain Stay on targetlast_img