As a futurist, I’m often asked about the future of jobs. It is a concern for policy-makers, employers and the general population alike. What I realized, however, is that no one cares about losing the job itself. What they are worried about is how they will make a living in a future where they have become obsolete.
And yes, the fear of artificial intelligence (AI) is real. The McKinsey Global Institute estimates AI can automate 50% of all paid tasks today. Our primitive machine learning AI can easily complete repetitive human tasks better than any human could, including recognizing speech, context, shapes, and images. These narrow AI can also complete tasks like navigating an unpredictable field of obstacles, play an instrument, analyze large amounts of unorganized data and more. In 2021, AI will safely complete repetitive tasks with random components, like driving vehicles on crowded streets better than any human driver.
The speed at which AI is improving is astounding. The smart software is improving at an exponential rate since our software engineers use older versions of AI to help them program AI software updates.
In fact, developments in AI is so impressive and there is so much money invested by major well-known multinationals right now that most AI experts expect a human-level AI to emerge before the year 2040.
What will happen to the job market between now and the year 2040?