Skip to main content

Will robots really take our jobs?

 On January 23rd 1812, a group of artisans stormed in a textile workshop in Nottingham (UK). Armed with hammers, they smashed the knitting machines that could produce goods 100 times faster than by hand. Most of them were arrested, sentenced to death and hanged at York Castle. They were Luddites, a movement of highly skilled textile artisans that in early XIX century were protesting against the increasing use of machines operated by unskilled workers.

The fear of machines taking our jobs is nothing new; and we can see the exact same thing happening now amplified by Hollywood movies, which generate a rather negative aura around robots. However, Artificial Intelligence is already bringing huge growth from the new types of goods, services and innovations that this technology enables. Indeed, Gartner [1] estimates that AI will generate $2.9 trillion in business value in 2021.

Does it mean that our jobs will be safe? Not at all. Artificial Intelligence will definitely take many of our jobs - 75 million by 2022 according to the World Economic Forum [2]. However, in the same period WEF estimates that 133 million new jobs being created - so there will be a net increase in employment. The mid-term expectation is that most of the repetitive, low-demanding jobs will be gradually taken by machines, while more meaningful jobs that require our unique human skills will arise.

In other words, we won't have a jobs issue but a skills issue, and we have to figure out how we can prepare for these new jobs. We don't have much time, though: by 2022, 54% of the employees will require significant reskilling [2]. There won't be a finish line. Workers will need to change their mindsets and keep upskilling and reskilling throughout their lives. The biggest challenge for policy-makers, businesses and individuals is the societal move towards agile life-long learning.

What will be the most demanded skills by 2022? Analytical thinking, active learning, creativity, tech design, programming, critical thinking, complex problem-solving and leadership.

These transformations, if managed poorly, could widen gaps in society and create greater inequality. However, if they are managed wisely, they could lead to a new age of meaningful jobs and better quality of life


Popular posts from this blog

How to jump to time offsets in HTML5 video

Let's say that you have a 30-minute WEBM video file, from which you just want to play the following video segments , jumping from one to the other automatically  without interruptions : [00:01:25.00 - 00:02:25.00] -> from second 85 to 145 [00:11:40.00 - 00:11:55.00] -> from second 700 to 715 [00:20:26.00 - 00:21:07.00] -> from second 1226 to 1267 [00:26:11.00 - 00:28:01.00] -> from second 1571 to 1681 To increase the complexity, let's think that you have these video segments in a PHP variable $arrayVideoSegments  (normally the case if they were retrieved from the database).   $arrayVideoSegments[0]->startTime = 85   $arrayVideoSegments[0]->endTime = 145   $arrayVideoSegments[1]->startTime = 700   $arrayVideoSegments[1]->endTime = 715   $arrayVideoSegments[2]->startTime = 1226   $arrayVideoSegments[2]->endTime = 1267   $arrayVideoSegments[3]->startTime = 1571   $arrayVideoSegments[3]->endTime = 1681 The

The Ethics Canvas

In 2008, Alexander Osterwalder presented an innovative tool called " Business Model Canvas " (BMC) that aimed to help entrepreneurs to capture the fundamental business knowledge about their project, and bring about pivots in order to make the business model more consistent and successful.  Since then, the BMC has helped over 5 million entrepreneurs increase the value that they provide to their users, and find a sustainable model. In 2015, a group of researchers from ADAPT Centre  started using a similar approach in order to detect at early stage all the ethical implications of a project, and help entrepreneurs and researchers pivot their idea in order to minimise these issues. If you think about new technologies such as biotech, AI, IoT, VR, biometrics, blockchain, 3D printing,... they all bring great advancements for humanity, but they have some potential ethical issues that could have a catastrophic impact. After some months of hard work and experiments, we h

El Lean Canvas, explicado paso a paso

Tengo el honor de ser profesor del curso Startup Innovation Lab , del Plan de Empleo para la Educación Superior , en el que jóvenes canarios en situación de desempleo descubren las principales técnicas de emprendimiento siguiendo la metodología Lean Startup . Dado que no hay muchos ejemplos prácticos y en español sobre cómo completar el Lean Canvas , he creado un vídeo de 14 minutos en el que se explica, paso a paso, cómo completar el canvas utilizando Spotify como producto de ejemplo. Éste es el canvas resultante. Espero que sea de utilidad al igual que lo está siendo para mis alumnos.