Will automation cause rising unemployment by 2020?

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§ Judgement rule

How will the final result of the question be determined?

The question will be judged by the OECD average employment rate of workers with an education level below upper secondary, as shown by the OECD Data report for 2020.
Reference date: Jan. 31, 2021, 24:00 UTC

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Please predict ...

.. the future employment level of low-level education workers. A lower level could indicate an effect of automation, but obviously also be the result of other causes.

Automated production line - Copyright: Ramesh Pathania / MintAutomation and education of workers

Jobs that are routine, repetitive and predictable are most easily done by a machine, for example manual labour in manufacturing but also jobs in service sector such as telemarketing or cooking (fast food). [1]

Other jobs may change, leaving the menial tasks to machines. Humans must aquire new, higher-level skillsets for their upgraded jobs or risk unemployment. Therefore workers with a low level of education should be at a higher risk.

The Luddite Fallacy [2] states that technological advancement does not destroy jobs - it only changes the composition of jobs in the economy. New technologies create new jobs with higher-level skills and a general rise in income. However, some challenge the fallacy as knowledge jobs may now be subject to automation, too.

Employment rate of workers below second level education

Below is actual labour market data over the past twelve years for low-level education. It could point more to the financial cisis of 2007/2008 or to general economic performance as causes for such unemployment. In Germany, a generally improving labour market spilled over to low-level education workers.

Employment rate of under second level education workers - Copyright: OECD Data

Source: Employment by education level - Lowest level education, OECD Data [3].


[1] The Guardian - "What jobs will still be around in 20 years? Read this to prepare your future"

[2] Technostism Wikia - "Luddite Fallacy"

[3] OECD Data - "Employment by education level" for below upper secondary education.

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Reasons and arguments Analyze

Question owner:
R. Bitrary
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Publication is overdue 2021/01/31 24:00 UTC