Surprise! Technology Doesn’t Kill Jobs – It Creates Them

By Phill Powell

It’s a familiar cliché that many people are concerned about – the idea of human workers losing their jobs to robots that work more cheaply and efficiently. But now there’s substantial evidence that says that more jobs have been created by automation than have been taken away.

Are robots taking human jobs? The answer may surprise you.

According to a new study, “The dominant trend is of contracting employment in agriculture and manufacturing being more than offset by rapid growth in the caring, creative, technology and business services sectors.”

In other words, more service-based industries will provide more than enough jobs to replace those lost to automation.

The study was produced by Deloitte, a consultancy group that studies trends in economics. They recently announced startling data findings that indicate technology has actually spurred job growth. The study included nearly 150 years of census records in England and Wales, looking at occupation data and comparing it to population trends.

And the study’s authors don’t think that robots will replace humans. “Machines will take on more repetitive and laborious tasks, but seem no closer to eliminating the need for human labor than at any time in the last 150 years.”

In many instances, robots and human workers function as a team, serving together on tech projects.

Zero-Sum Thinking
Part of the problem with our original cliché is that it relies upon “zero-sum thinking”, which incorrectly argues there is only a limited number of opportunities at all times. Therefore, if robots are assigned to any of those jobs, it must mean that somewhere, human workers have been sent home from the factory with a Termination slip.

Unfortunately, zero-sum thinking doesn’t accurately reflect modern life or the global economy. In modern life, new types of jobs are constantly being created in the wake of new technology, and many of those jobs require human workers.

And in our global economy, manufacturing is now only one piece of a very large and interconnected puzzle. Service industries are just as central to the U.S. economy, and also increasingly important to the economies of other developed countries.

Every time one door closes, another opens. In this case, it’s the door to a robot-repair shop, a new form of labor that requires human staffing.

Exciting New Work World
Technology is not going away. That’s why learning about technology makes so much sense for young people who want to succeed in the future. That’s exactly what kids (ages 6-12) and teens (12-17) do at Digital Media Academy tech camps – they get a hands-on look at today’s hottest technology, like in DMA’s robotics camps, for example.

While it’s true that robots and automation are changing the face of manufacturing – and human workers have been displaced – manufacturing is only one aspect of the global economy. Today’s work world has a lot more going on than manufacturing alone, although one of the most exciting technologies like 3D printing involves manufacturing.

A DMA tech camp can change a young person’s life with a wonderful sense of purpose and direction. Start your personal path to tech success now.