Great Guardian piece on automation, the IoT and the future of job, with some juicy Gerd quotes

I was interviewed for this piece last week – read it here.

“If we do this wrong, the technology providers could end up destroying hundreds of millions of jobs with products and services in the cloud, which makes these businesses indispensable and very rich,” says Gerd Leonhard, futurist, author and CEO of The Futures Agency.

Leonhard is referring to the threat of automation, of robots coming over here and taking our jobs. It’s almost unthinkable. Only a few weeks ago the UK unemployment rate fell to 5.5% and wage growth rose above 2%. Let the good times roll, some may say, latching onto a new optimism that even pollsters Gallop identified recently…

Leonard suggests this will fit into what he calls, “a decline of the capitalist system based on consumption.” We will have to rethink the concept of work and jobs he says.

“While we will be freed up from a lot of jobs that no one wants to do, we will have to think collectively about how we cope with this otherwise we will have huge structural issues with kids unemployed,” he says. And do the kids care? Or are they heading into a Britannia Unchained world of idleness?

 

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