The Future of Work: Obama Predicts Humans Replaced by Machines

Posted By on March 9, 2016

In U.S. President Barack Obama’s 2016 Economic Report of the President to Congress outlines the increasing probability that jobs that pay under $20/hr face a strong likelihood of being replaced by a machine in the future.

Read the PDF, page 238-239

An excerpt:

To better understand the relationship between automation and wages at the occupational level, CEA matched an occupation’s median hourly wage to the occupational automation scores from Frey and Osborne (2013). The median probability of automation was then calculated for three ranges of hourly wage: less than 20 dollars; 20 to 40 dollars; and more than 40 dollars. The results, presented in Figure 5-15, suggest that occupations that are easier to automate have lower wages. Low probability of outright automation, however, would seem to make an occupation a better candidate for being complemented and improved by automation in the workplace (such as the role played by e-mail, statistical analysis, and computerized computation for a variety of office-based jobs) and so are not as prone to seeing an effect on wages from increased automation.

These data demonstrate the need for a robust training and education agenda, to ensure that displaced workers are able to quickly and smoothly move into new jobs.

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Question. What will the new jobs be?


Nikolas Badminton is a world-respected futurist speaker that researches, speaks, and writes about the future of work, how technology is affecting the workplace, how workers are adapting, the sharing economy, and how the world is evolving. He appears at conferences in Canada, USA, UK, and Europe. Email him to book him for your radio, TV show, or conference.


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