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Symposium 2014

The Future of Jobs

The Challenge

The time will come when technologies have completely substituted labor. No way, you say, and you are probably right: it will perhaps only be half of all labor. Indeed, a growing number of commentators think that technology is likely to have a more pronounced impact on employment than it has had in the past. While routine, codifiable tasks have already been largely automated, machines are becoming increasingly good at carrying out cognitive, formerly “human-only” tasks, such as language processing or driving. And the emergence of artificial intelligence and the digital interconnections between people will do much more; with unclear consequences for the labor market. Yet, automation is not the only reason for concern. Combine technologies with globalization and the jobs which cannot (yet) be automated will be offshored or taken over by an international superstar who can, aided be the internet, reach out to individuals anywhere on the planet.

Technology has always triggered large scale structural change and, hence, changed the jobs landscape. Despite widespread automation we still don’t work fewer hours than decades ago. But will this new technological age be different? Will the technologies ahead make human labor unnecessary? Or will they help the world to reach new levels of progress and well-being? In any case, the distributional consequences of technological progress are unclear. In fact, the current dimensions of inequality and polarization may only be the harbinger of more extreme conditions. How should we deal with the distributional consequences? Which competencies will keep us afloat, and how can they be taught? How should schools and universities respond if their diplomas are worth less and less, while individual competencies, such as enthusiasm, creativity, or entrepreneurialism are rewarded more and more?

    Proposals

    Proposal
    Symposium 2014

    The Future of Jobs

    Focus attention on improving skills among the most disadvantaged. This involves more school mobility and attracting better talent to teaching, especially in the US, largely by paying teachers better. ...

    Focus attention on improving skills among the most disadvantaged. This involves more school mobility and attracting better talent to teaching, especially in the US, largely by paying teachers better. Nothing could be better than not having any jobs in the future. Leisure is good, work is what we do to buy the goods that complement leisure. If the economy can produce the same amount of output with much less labor, then all the better. The concern should not be over high output-per-worker in the future. Increases in labor productivity are favorable to labor since there is a very strong connection

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society

    Background Paper

    Background Paper
    Symposium 2014

    The Future of Jobs

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society

    Virtual Library

    Virtual Library File
    Symposium 2014

    Is our job safe in the second machine age?

    A concise summary of a widely publicized paper by the Oxford researchers Frey and Osborne, incl. a wide array of further links. How many jobs are susceptible to automation? The authors approach this q ...

    A concise summary of a widely publicized paper by the Oxford researchers Frey and Osborne, incl. a wide array of further links. How many jobs are susceptible to automation? The authors approach this question from the perspective of engineering bottlenecks, i.e. they identify where engineering science is stuck and thus unlikely to develop techniques replacing human labour soon. This applies to (i) perception and manipulation tasks, (ii) creative intelligence tasks, and (iii) social intelligence tasks. Using detailed occupational task data, they claim that 47% of US employment is at risk. While this number is only an indication, relying on a number of assumptions, the analysis entails food for thought for public policy and the future of jobs.

    Virtual Library File
    Symposium 2014

    Labor’s Digital Displacement

    The Nobel Laureate explains the implications of digital technologies for the world economy, placing an emphasis on global supply chains. He writes, “production will not vanish; it will just be less ...

    The Nobel Laureate explains the implications of digital technologies for the world economy, placing an emphasis on global supply chains. He writes, “production will not vanish; it will just be less labor intensive. All countries will eventually need to rebuild their growth models around digital technologies and the human capital that supports their deployment and expansion.” He urges us to try to understand where technological forces and trends will lead us. This is what we want to do in the session “The Future of Jobs.”

    Virtual Library File
    Symposium 2014

    Transforming Students’ Lives with Social and Emotional Learning

    Which competencies will the young generation entering the labour market need? Highly developed social skills will certainly help to set us apart from machines on the labour market. This article by two ...

    Which competencies will the young generation entering the labour market need? Highly developed social skills will certainly help to set us apart from machines on the labour market. This article by two researchers from a Yale psychology lab shows how emotional and social skills can be taught, and how this makes students’ lives a little bit better already today.

    Virtual Library File
    Symposium 2014

    The Future of Employment: How susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation?

    We examine how susceptible jobs are to computerisation. To as- sess this, we begin by implementing a novel methodology to estimate the probability of computerisation for 702 detailed occupations, usin ...

    We examine how susceptible jobs are to computerisation. To as- sess this, we begin by implementing a novel methodology to estimate the probability of computerisation for 702 detailed occupations, using a Gaussian process classifier. Based on these estimates, we examine ex- pected impacts of future computerisation on US labour market outcomes, with the primary objective of analysing the number of jobs at risk and the relationship between an occupation’s probability of computerisation, wages and educational attainment. According to our estimates, about 47 percent of total US employment is at risk. We further provide evidence that wages and educational attainment exhibit a strong negative relation- ship with an occupation’s probability of computerisation.

    Virtual Library File
    Symposium 2014

    AI, Robotics, and the Future of Jobs

    Experts envision automation and intelligent agents permeating vast areas of our work and personal lives by 2025, but they are divided on whether these advances will displace more jobs than they create.

    Experts envision automation and intelligent agents permeating vast areas of our work and personal lives by 2025, but they are divided on whether these advances will displace more jobs than they create.