Attention, Americans: Robots in the U.S. are stealing jobs, reducing wages and promoting inequality.
That’s according to new research published by the National Bureau of Economic Research. Economists Daron Acemoglu of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Pascual Restrepo of Boston University were behind the study.
The automation analysis looked at industrial robots’ impact in the U.S. between 1990 and 2007, according to a report on the research in the MIT Technology Review. During that period, automation led to the loss of up to 670,000 American jobs, with manufacturing workers taking the hardest blow. The MIT Tech Review says:
Adjusting for effects like globalization and demography, the analysis also shows that, on aggregate, an extra robot per thousand workers decreased employment by 5.6 workers and cut wages by around 0.5 percent. Those figures were worse for some specific areas outside of big cities.
The new research quantifying the large, negative employment impact robots have already had comes just a week after Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told Axios that automation was “not even on our radar screen” and predicted its effects to be “50 to 100 more years” away.
Tips for outsmarting job-stealing robots
Although it’s too soon to know how automation will affect most jobs, there is a good chance you will be impacted. In “5 Ways to Outsmart the Robots That Are Stealing Our Jobs, Marilyn Lewis writes:
The danger is not just from assembly-line machines performing tasks humans have done, like stamping out plastic tableware or flipping hamburgers. Smart software and automated processes are handling tasks that until recently it seemed only a human could do, including writing articles like this one.
Read the story to find out how you can survive automation. One tip is to learn all you can right now:
Before committing to a career path or to spending money on counseling or training, learn everything you can about the future of your field or the field you want to enter. Find out:
- What types of jobs will be replaced?
- Which kinds of jobs will remain in demand?
- What skills will you need to do them?
Is automation something to fear or something to embrace? That depends. Find out more in “What Happens If Artificial Intelligence Puts Us All Out of Work?”
Are you concerned you may lose your job to automation? Sound off below or on Facebook.
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