Africa: the Impact of Automation, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

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Africa: Thinking Aloud - the Impact of Automation, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

The fourth industrial revolution has begun and advances in automation, artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics are coming fast and furiously. These advances will result in job losses as businesses in many countries incorporate artificial intelligence and/or robotics into their operations to cut costs and improve efficiencies. Some refer to this economic shift as the fourth industrial revolution.

Jobs will be lost, jobs will evolve and this revolution is going to be ageless, it's going to be classless and it's going to affect everyone. Major companies are going to employ fewer people to get a lot more done with more precision and better quality.

We have no precedent for the speed or the all-encompassing nature of this disruption. In the past people could move from one kind of routine job to another. But what's coming means that when one kind of routine job becomes obsolete, robots will also perform those other routine jobs. In his book Rise of the Robots, Martin Ford said, "This time many workers will have to switch from routine, unskilled jobs to non-routine skilled jobs to stay ahead of automation."