Some jobs are just not going to come back. Those were the words spoken by Barack Obama at a recent town hall meeting when talking about how automation is changing employment in the United States of America. Recently, we reported, that Germany had pulled ahead of the U.S. when it came to adopting new industrial automation technologies. Nonetheless, Obama assured the crowd that new jobs in new industries would be made available once the robots replace humans inside factories.
Obama said: “But, I gotta tell you that the days when you just being willing able to work hard and you can walk into a plant and suddenly there’s going to be a job for you thirty years of forty years, that’s just not going to be there for our kids. Because more and more, that stuff’s gonna be automated. And if you go into a factory that kid is going to need to know computers, or is gonna need to know some science and some math because they’re not gonna be picking anything up they’re just going to be working on a keyboard.”
Further northwards, the people of Canada, when asked whether or not they were worried about a robot taking their job, were revealed to be the most anxious. A staggering 81 percent of Canadians believe that a robot will replace them. Their anxiety is not unwarranted by any means because a recent report (The Talented Mr. Robot: The Impact of Automation on Canada’s Workforce ) by the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship (BII+E) at Ryerson University in Toronto revealed that 42 percent of Canadian workers are in industries that will inevitably be replaced by robotics.
Creig Lamb, an advisor from (BII+E) was quoted by IT Business Canada, saying: “Overall we discovered evidence from both sides of the debate. While these technologies can potentially threaten existing jobs, it is also important to recognize that they are also significant job creators that have the potential to improve productivity and raise overall living standards.
So, both Obama’s U.S. and Trudeau’s Canada are certain that new industries are coming. Australia wants to ensure that their future working force is completely ready for the changes automation is bringing. Experts are warning that education must change soon to teach new skills to young students who will be living in an automated, Internet of Things future.
Educators are calling for “technical and social” skill teaching in a STEM-focused (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) environment that teaches students how to solve real life problems. This is to try and eliminate the workforce that concerns itself with learning how to do repetitive tasks that have now been replaced by industrial robotics.
A youth advocate spoke to Australia’s ABC news, saying: “We’ve had incredible education in this country, but there is no-one that genuinely really thinks it’s fit for purpose now and into the future…Australia is, right now, not prepared. We could start working with 12-year-olds today. By the time they’ve done six years of high school and they’re 18, we could genuinely have changed their trajectory if we focused on some of these education changes that need to happen and set them up and Australia up for a very different future.”
Source: ABC News / Engineering Career