Is It More Than Jobs Are Most Vulnerable?

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So which jobs are most vulnerable? In a widely noted study published in 2013, Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne examined the probability of computerisation for 702 occupations and found that 47% of workers in America had jobs at high risk of potential automation. In particular, they warned that most workers in transport and logistics (such as taxi and delivery drivers) and office support (such as receptionists and security guards) “are likely to be substituted by computer capital”, and that many workers in sales and services (such as cashiers, counter and rental clerks, telemarketers and accountants) also faced a high risk of computerisation. They concluded that “recent developments in machine learning will put a substantial share of…show more content…
As more jobs are automated, this trend seems likely to continue.

And this is only the start. “We are just seeing the tip of the iceberg. No office job is safe,” says Sebastian Thrun, an AI professor at Stanford known for his work on self-driving cars. Automation is now “blind to the colour of your collar”, declares Jerry Kaplan, another Stanford academic and author of “Humans Need Not Apply”, a book that predicts upheaval in the labour market. Gloomiest of all is Martin Ford, a software entrepreneur and the bestselling author of “Rise of the Robots”. He warns of the threat of a “jobless future”, pointing out that most jobs can be broken down into a series of routine tasks, more and more of which can be done by machines.

In previous waves of automation, workers had the option of moving from routine jobs in one industry to routine jobs in another; but now the same “big data” techniques that allow companies to improve their marketing and customer-service operations also give them the raw material to train machine-learning systems to perform the jobs of more and more people. “E-discovery” software can search mountains of legal documents much more quickly than human clerks or paralegals can. Some forms of journalism, such as writing market reports and sports summaries, are also being automated.

Predictions that automation will make humans redundant have been made before, however, going back to the Industrial Revolution, when textile
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