Skilled Work, Without the Worker
1. Workers in a traditional, less robot-intensive factories needed skills in the use of hand tools, power tools, and electro-mechanical assembly. In the last two decades workers have also needed the skills to run computer-operated equipment and production systems. According to the skilled Work, Without the Worker article, what skills are needed now by workers in the new robot intensive factories?
According to the article; engineering, programming and computer degrees are what are needed in the robot intense factories. There are still assembly and other unskilled positions that wouldn’t require those skills. However this is growing increasingly less and less in the factories where robots are doing most of the work.
2. Proponents of robotic manufacturing and those who run companies that produce robotic manufacturing systems maintain that, although increased use of robots in manufacturing will result in the loss of blue collar jobs, this job loss will be offset by job gains elsewhere in the labor market. What new jobs are these proponents of robotic manufacturing referring to?
They are referring to skilled jobs, such as designing, engineering, servicing and operating assembly lines; all of the jobs they say will replace the “blue collar” workers will require higher education and extensive computer knowledge and skills.
3. What are the implications of the Skilled work, Without the Worker article for education and training for all of those entering the workforce? In California especially, we have some counties with high unemployment rates and homelessness due to this last recession. Less unskilled positions will increase this to even more staggering numbers. The debt crisis of student loans and the effects it is having on current and previous students trying to find a job, even with a degree, that pays much more than minimum wage is already a huge problem. There are thousands of people with college educations...
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