How computer automation affects occupations: Technology, jobs, and skills

How computer automation affects occupations: Technology, jobs, and skills

A popular notion is that computer automation leads to major job losses. However, this ignores the dynamic economic responses that involve both changing demand and inter-occupation substitution. Using US data, this column explores the effect of automation on employment growth for detailed occupational categories. Computer-using occupations have had greater job growth to date, while those using few computers suffer greater computer-related losses. The real challenge posed by automation is developing a workforce with the skills to use new technologies.

Automation has become a concern not just for blue-collar manufacturing workers, but also for white-collar workers and even professionals. New computer […]

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