Area Development
{{RELATEDLINKS}} A new report from the McKinsey Global Institute — A Future That Works: Automation, Employment, and Productivity — highlights trends in automation technologies — including robotics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning — and their effects on businesses and economies worldwide. Some of the key findings of the report are highlighted below: The authors of the report explain that today’s shift in workforce activities is similar to that previously seen in the shift from agriculture as well as the decreasing share of manufacturing employment in the U.S. Both of these shifts in employment were accompanied by the creation of new types of work not previously anticipated.

Experts in the field of robotics and automation would agree. For example, in an interview with the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute Professor Howard Choset notes that robotics will help U.S. workers compete with low-wage workers abroad and will create and sustain new jobs. According to Professor Choset, “Automation and innovation always create jobs. Automation will also end jobs. However, the creation and addition of jobs is so much bigger that as a society we accept it.”

He sees robots as “just another tool” that companies need to employ. Business owners realize they must automate if they are going to become more productive and attract more customers and that, in turn, will lead to the creation of more jobs.