Thursday, April 06, 2017

Will Automation Related Job Losses Increase?

"The consultancy firm PricewaterhouseCooper is predicting that the U.K. will lose 30 percent of its jobs to automation in the next 15 years. Automation is a global issue, and some countries are considering Universal Basic Income as a means of counteracting its associated job loses"

Is this more job losses than the usual trend? As in what is the average rate of job losses over 15 years?

Farming used to be the vast majority of workers 200 years ago. Farming underwent four and a bit halvings of the workforce percentage between 1900 and 2000.

In pure raw numbers there were 11.6 million farmers in 1900. 6 million in 1960. And 3.2 million today. In this time the population went from 76 million to 320.

In raw number terms employment in Agriculture dropped -0.65% a year when population was growing 2.8% a year.

So that's a bit over .65% of farm workers a year leave the sector. Not move from horse powering job to tractor pulling job but leave agriculture. So loss of individual agriculture job has been well over .65% per year for 100 years.

Over the 100 years agriculture was mechanised, refrigerated, nitrogen fertilised, pesticised, green revolutioned, factory farmed and GMOed. A lot happened.

To lose 30% of jobs in 15 years 2.35% of the jobs would have to lost each year.

That projected rate of job losses does seem to be a good bit higher than the loss for agriculture for last 100 years.

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