South Lancashire, Britain, late 18th century. The invention of the cotton mill forced 1000s of cotton weavers to move from their isolated cottages to under a single roof. The factory was born. Innovations in iron making and steam engines followed to create the first industrial revolution. This created social impact that entered every facet of people's lives. Before the first revolution, most people were poor subsistence farmers or artisans making sellable items one at a time. Wealth was created, standards of living rose, people gained and lost jobs, and many moved to cities to work in factories. The fabric of society shifted.
Detroit, USA, October 1, 1908. The unveiling of the Ford Model T welcomed the birth of the assembly line. The assembly line saw mass production and the second industrial revolution arrive across the world. Ford's genius shone when he offered workers an unprecedented $5 a day wage which was almost double that of the average. The offer, was so his employees could afford to buy his product. Ford created supply, demand and means. This increased wage created the middle class which today accounts for just under half of the global population. The fabric of society shifted.
Earth, The Solar System, Early 2017. Dr Jim Yong Kim, President, World Bank argues that "the world is on a crash course as people's hopes collide with a future in which millions of jobs are automated". In the first 10 years of the 21st century, the automation of the manufacturing industry saw the loss of over four million US jobs. Unemployment figures, with the exception of the post GFC period, suggest these jobs didn't vanish but were reappropriated. A 2016 Oxford University report states that if your job pays less than $20 an hour, there is an 83% chance it will be automated.
Automation particularly affects jobs known as "3D" which is an acronym for any combination of dirty, dangerous, demeaning, dull, difficult and demanding. Machines will continue to take on more repetitive and laborious tasks; further displacing these kinds of manufacturing roles.
Alternatively, robot's will increase human output and improve productivity. This reduces costs. Business will invest in innovation. Innovation begets new markets, new revenue streams and new jobs which all combine to give consumers more purchasing power. Much like Ford's five dollars a day, the modern worker can be paid more as productivity rises, just in time to take advantage of the new products available and their increased purchasing power. The fabric of society shifted.
So where are the new jobs coming from?
Dr Kim believes the future is in the hands of those who can learn.
The one thing you know for sure that you'll need in whatever the economy looks like in the future is people who can learn.
He further believes this can only happen if we invest heavily in education. Economists at the consultancy firm Deloitte have released a report stating creative, caring, technology and business services sectors have grown to replace the loss of jobs due to automation. We need to look into what these roles have in common.
These roles are fundamentally based on principles that robots could never hope to achieve. The investment in education should build upon the things that make humans human. That is, creativity, problem-solving, innovation, adapting, learning, social-emotional and interpersonal skills. Dr Kim wants "to create a sense of urgency to invest in people".
What Dr Kim means when he says "invest in people" is that we need to prepare learners for an ambiguous future and job market. It's no surprise that these areas make up the 21st-century skills. The following ideas, from World Economic Forum outline what needs to be achieved.
Communication and negotiation
Collaboration and teamwork
Creativity and innovation
Critical thinking and problem solving
Social, emotional and cultural skills
Grit and growth mindset
Dubai, UAE October 17th, 2017. Kalebr presents a platform that uses STEAM+ to inspire learners from all around the globe to challenge themselves to build the skills required to benefit from the automation revolution. Creativity, caring and innovation are celebrated as people rejoice. Robots automate "3D" jobs and humans focus on their inherent skills. Due to this automation, humans are happier, spend more time with their family and have a higher standard of living.
The first three industrial revolutions ushered in changes that shifted culture. Join the fourth with Kalebr. For more information or to schedule a demo hit the button below.