Sample Essay on Technology and Its Effects on Human Unemployment

Summary

            Technological joblessness denotes the job loss largely because of advancements in expertise. Present-day supporters of the effects of expertise on unemployment affirm that effectiveness has been dissociating from employment all through the 21st century, as rising numbers of segments are gradually implementing technology. The quarters that are generating job loss are greater than the ones generating employment opportunities. Robots in addition to mechanized structures will improve efficiency comparable to the manner it happened in past industrial advancements. Though expertise has had its gains, it has significantly affected human job loss. With progressions in expertise, transformation will come more rapidly and control a much bigger fragment of the financial system. The quantity of technological improvements has become tremendously swift in the zone of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and the adverse essential impacts of production on employment could surpass job improvement in economies greatly reliant on the advancement of the economic grounds. Job loss, regardless of whether it is redressed is disquieting, dehumanizing and improper. Since technical progression is the difficulty that is impacting human employment, the declaration could be to try to control or hinder new technological developments. Successful policy interventions should address both short-term and long-term intentions and ensure that short-range actions are coordinated with long-standing intentions.

Technology and Its Effects on Human Unemployment

Introduction

Technological unemployment denotes the joblessness mainly because of advancements in technology. Early interest concerning technology and its impacts on human unemployment was typified by the Luddites, textile employees that dreaded that automated looms could create greater productivity but decrease the number of employees thus resulting in mass joblessness. Nevertheless, whereas advancements in technology resulted in textile employees being on unemployment, fresh jobs in other sectors arose. Attributable to the change of work from mechanized sectors to non-computerized sectors, the effects of technology on human joblessness has been referred to as the Luddite fallacy (Marchant, Stevens, & Hennessy, 2014, pp. 26-30). Contemporary supporters of the effects of technology on unemployment affirm that efficiency has been uncoupling from employment all through the 21st century, as rising numbers of sectors are progressively adopting technology. They demonstrate that researches illustrating that human unemployment are greatly intense in professions entailing regular physical and psychological labor, the occupations that are the cheapest to automate. Though technology has had its benefits, it has greatly affected human unemployment.

Research Question

  • What are the effects of technology on employment and what could be done to ensure that the negative effects are eliminated and the positive effects enhanced?

Literature Review

There are numerous rationales behind the thinking that technological advancement will be more intense than agricultural revolution. With advancements in technology, transformation will come quicker and influence a much bigger section of the financial system. The sectors that are creating unemployment are more than the ones generating jobs. The general-rationale factor of technological advancements signifies that even the sectors and the jobs that are generated are not without end. With the continuation of the present tendency, it might turn out that a decade from now, 25% of middle-aged men will be unemployed at any particular time. Unemployment-causing technological advancements could be categorized under the topics of automation, computerization, and process advancement (Marchant et al., 2014, pp. 30-38). Automation and computerization fundamentally entail shifting roles from employees to machines while process advancement entails the eradication of tasks altogether. The common theme of the three topics is that roles are shifted from employees thus reducing employment. Actually, the classifications normally overlap: process advancement could encompass a mechanizing or automating aspect. The distinction between automation and computerization is as well skewed since at times computerization could entail adequate management to be taken as a section of automation (Bajcsy, 2014, pp. 42-43).

Increased unemployment because of enhancement in productivity creates an expectation that no fresh jobs, or not a lot of jobs, will occur to fill the emptiness or cause negative effects of unemployment. Robots as well as mechanized systems will boost productivity similar to the way it happened in past technological advancements, with the substitution of steam engines by electric power (Bajcsy, 2014, p. 42). The opponents of this perspective are as many as the proponents (Lyons, 2011). The standard-working hours have reduced considerably since the introduction of contemporary effectiveness yielding expertise and keep on falling with a reduction of labor required to satisfy the demand. If the technological advancements of a company lead to decrease of labor inputs, the company’s cost of production decreases thus shifting the company’s supply curve outward and decreasing the cost of the products and services. The extensive implementation of technological advancements could result in market entry by different companies, partly making up for the dislocated labor, though the major advantage of the technological advancement is the augment in collective demand that emanates from price reduction. Provided that actual prices reduce (thus boosting actual incomes), the extra buying power offers customers the capability to buy more goods and services. Attributable to technological developments, there are normally goods and services novel to the customer, for instance, wireless communications gadgets and advanced health care.

 The augment in collective demand makes most economists have conviction that advancements in technology, though disruptive of individual professions and some companies, cannot result in complete joblessness, but raises joblessness because of its expansionary impact on the financial system. The machines are employed as a tool to boost the productivity of employees and some employees will have a chance and ability to control the machines (Drum, 2013). Such augment in technological developments could affect employment in a troublesome way, with the new opportunities being out of reach of the abilities and chances of the majority of employees. Dissimilar opinions have been articulated on the degree of technological advancement with most people affirming that it greatly affects employment while others highlighting its benefits. Studies reveal that the degree of technological developments has become extremely fast in the sector of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and the unfavorable underlying impacts of output on employment could exceed job development in economies highly dependent on the advancement of the economic fields.

Some people believe that someday the economy will thrust into gear. They also believe that joblessness will finally decrease to less than 6% and that generation of chances of employment will go back to its pace and even be more. Nevertheless, it seems the world is gradually getting trapped in a new norm of high joblessness and reduced job creation with the continued technological advancement. The initial position was that technological advancement created many new jobs for the people that were displaced from their old jobs.

Mlot (2014) presents the advantages and disadvantages of having robots rule the high ranked jobs and leaving humans for the low paid ones. It is robot revolution because it could literally change the world. But the question is: will people agree to the idea or no? If well handled the world could reap the benefits of technology and prevent the disadvantages.

After the computerization of the farms, the US shifted to computerization of industries (Rotman, 2013, pp. 27-35). When the cost of manufacturing reduced, partially because of technological advancement that dramatically decreased the cost of production and transportation of raw material, technological advancement was directed to service sectors. Lyons (2011) talks about how above all the unemployment that is already happening in the United States; a new threat is seen to come very soon which is the invasion of the robots to all working factories and business offices. Like in the other sectors, technological advancement has been causing increased unemployment in service sectors too. The employees at gas station points have greatly reduced, and employees in banks (tellers) and telecommunication companies have followed suit. Other employees facing the threat of unemployment are secretaries, publishers, office clerks and any other employee in positions that can be easily automated.

Despite the technological advancement, there are still many employees in retail sales, learning institutions, and health facilities, though these represents the least proficient sections of the economy and demands are mounting on the reduction of costs. In these sectors too, technological advancements are fast approaching. It appears possible that in the next decade, online sales employees will overpower the majority of retail sales employees (Rotman, 2013). The next decade could as well witness a wave of online courses as well as classrooms thus displacing a good number of educators. Moreover, the health care sector might as well become more technological where patients will be carrying their medical documents on smartphones and laptops. Personal health application programs could as well arise and allow self-diagnosis.

Even though technological advancement is beneficial in some way, the employees are putting themselves out of place. With the current pace of technological advancement, half a century from now, a small machine might meet all the requirements, which might be referred to as iEverything. Ichbiah (2005) talks about how virtual ideas of having robots do practically everything in our lives to it becoming something that can actually happen in the near future. However, the greatest challenge that the world will be facing is that very few people will afford it since just a few people will be employed.

Extent of the Problem

            With respect to technology and its effects on unemployment, a couple of factors of the resulting difficulty encompass social and economic dimension (from both a personal and shared perception). To start with, from an economic viewpoint, rising prevalence and permanence of joblessness and underemployment offer the problem of the manner in which the affected people will sustain their existence and that of their dependents. Employment is a fundamental through which income, and thereby buying power, is distributed to the individuals that use all that the economy generates. If in the future machines permanently take up most of the work currently undertaken by people, then that will be a hazard to the very establishment of the economic structure. The economic challenges from joblessness do not just distress the people that are jobless, their families, and their dependants (Rotman, 2013). If a considerable (and increasing) level of the working-age people is not able to get sufficient work to maintain them with a sensible standard of living, the challenge would not just signify a personal disaster for the individuals. It would as well signify a great burden on the entire economy if the jobless cannot actively take part as customers of available goods and services.

              In addition to what machines are presently and ultimately capable of providing, there is more fruitful and valuable work that could be carried out by human employees, for instance, restoration of infrastructure, tidying up the environment, taking superior care of the ill and aged, or assisting individuals in developing nations amid other activities. The challenge is getting an economic formation to offset, or recognize, such efforts. The present political and economic systems appear unable to reward or recompense individuals to carry out these commendable tasks (Drum, 2013). For the majority of individuals, an employment caters for not just sustenance, but is as well associated with individuality, sense of worth and focus. Though it would be possible to get ways for individuals to finance the basic requirements of existence, if occupations and professions vanish, it might create or lead to great emotional and social stresses. This would be because of stigmatization or an incapacity to deal with the realism of long-term joblessness, encompassing anxiety, despair, mortality, poor self-worth, suicide, chronic diseases, divorce, and drug abuse to mention a few. Human beings must take part in some income generating tasks since being fruitful is fundamental to their welfare.

            Unemployment, irrespective of whether it is redressed is unsettling, dehumanizing and unbecoming. In this regard, employment and work ought to be deemed not things people do to live, but the things that people live to do. Extensive joblessness could also lead to shared distractions. There are problems created by the social interruptions that are probable of arising if the wealthy individuals keep on thriving and prospering while an increasing proportion of the residents are left behind in lasting poverty and desperation. A significant factor of the unemployment challenge is establishing whose employment will be terminated by technological advancement (Drum, 2013). A persistent theme amid researchers, scholars, and economists is that the middle-skilled category, rooted in the contemporary demands, has vanished and what has remained is a divergence between the highly-skilled (the rich) and the low-skilled (the underprivileged). The coring out of the economy through elimination of middle-class employments, and compelling employees into either poorly-paying manual work that cannot be totally carried out by machines (for instance construction and restaurant work) or higher-ranking employments entailing higher proficiencies and remuneration would have a tendency of dividing the populace into two contrasting categories.

            Nevertheless, more current studies imply that the influence of technological joblessness may focus mainly on low-class employees. Through the economic problems, the world will witness a new pressure to develop the learning and training of employees to have the ability to carry out skilled, well-paying jobs that at least are currently at times going unoccupied. When mulling over the near future and its financial and social consequences, it would be wise to think about the cohorts affected by the expected dislocation. When mainly the aged employees are affected, the economic element could be the most significant (Drum, 2013). People that have been employed for many years have already established their social rank and have mostly carried out their role to make the community fruitful.  

For the people that desire continuing with employment, re-learning and re-training would be vital. For the people that could be incapable or unconcerned with carrying on with employment, the concentration would be on the way they could retire with decorum and an excellent quality of life. This mainly relies on the formation of economic precautions, founded on the person’s savings or from other supplies of external backing. In contrast, if technological advancement affects mostly the employment of the youthful individuals, the challenge might be highly social and economic. The shortage of chances of employment for youthful individuals, who are probable of having freshly attained the most efficient edifying training, is on the verge of causing incredible disenchantment and aggravation, which could result in social trouble.

Gender might as well have an essential function with respect to expectations associated with unemployment and dislocation (Harris, 2014, pp. 48-50). Technological unemployment creates both victors and losers since it affects the nature and opportunities for employment. Females in most industrialized nations have significantly surpassed males in the achievement of higher learning and are hence better placed to getting high-ranking jobs. Sure enough, the persistent subject anchored in different studies is that the effects of technological unemployment cannot be distributed uniformly (Weissman, 2014). Though technological advancement will eradicate many chances of employment leading to joblessness or dislocation the majority of individuals that will be victim to this occurrence will be the less learned, whose present employment roles are more vulnerable t substitution by machines. Possibly, the concern primarily is the way to unevenly but not unjustly maintain the low and middle-skilled category while inducing them to willingly turn out to be more learned and participate in the community in payable and purposeful approaches.

With the constant development of capacities of non-natural aptitude, robotics, in addition to other technologies, more areas of employment will embrace automation and leave just a few chances of employment where human beings are required. Such effects of technology on human employment generate extensive, long-term inquiries concerning the kind of future community and lives people desire (Harris, 2014, 48-50). The effectiveness and affluence generated by technologies, though they affect human employment, form a window of opportunities to enforce strategies that could employ that affluence to assist every citizen acquire sufficient material support to take pleasure in a good life with better leisure and fulfillment. Policy interventions should handle both short-term and long-term objectives and make sure that short-range activities are aligned with long-standing objectives.

Policy Interventions

Defending Employment

            It is vital to seek the application of legal interventions to safeguard employment opportunities that could otherwise be eliminated by technological advancement. Since technological advancement is the challenge that is affecting human employment, the resolution could be to attempt to regulate or obstruct new technological advancements. Nevertheless, such strategies often capsulated by powerful editions of the precautionary principle are bound to fail for a number of explanations. For instance, limitations on technological advancement would make a country anticompetitive in the rising international markets as other nations would intervene to dislocate slackers and attain technological development. Moreover, technological innovations are being generated and commercialized very fast due to the requirement for and advantages of the technologies (Harris, 2014). Thus, forfeiting such technological advancements would possibly be harmful to entire social well-being. The hindrance of progress is not a triumphant or politically practicable policy and goes contrary to human nature and ambitions.                  

Distribution of Work

            Sharing of payable tasks amid many employees is believed to be beneficial. Though such strategies are mainly short-range, they could assist in delaying or lessening the negative effects of technology on employment. Setting a compulsory retirement age is a proposed manner of distributing employment opportunities amid many individuals. Some bosses (for instance, in airlines) have already enforced such a policy, and it could be employed more extensively across the financial system. The major benefit of such a strategy is that it could free up more employment opportunities to the gain of youthful individuals that are progressively being obstructed from the labor force due to unavailability of jobs (Ichbiah, 2005). Nevertheless, such a strategy would have considerable unfavorable effect on people and the community. With many individuals living longer, most individuals desire to keep on operating past the characteristic retirement age for emotional and economic explanations. Furthermore, it does not seem to be in the community’s approval to force the retirement of skilled and industrious employees on the basis of age. This is backed by Brynjolfsson and McAfee (2012) in their affirmation that “no country, however rich, can afford the waste of its human resources” (p. 28).                

Methodology

Research Design and Variables

            This study will use the secondary method of data collection where data will be obtained from Google, Google scholar, and online libraries like EBSCOhost and ProQuest and the research design will be qualitative. The dependent variable will be human unemployment while the independent variable will be technology, and the demographic variables will berace, level of education, income level, and gender.

Data Collection

Relevant material, such as books and peer reviewed journal articles, from the sources will be carefully selected and used for this study. The chosen materials will be recent and reliable.

Results, Findings, and Data Analysis

Since the data analysis plan depends on the research method and type of data used, a qualitative method of data analysis will be utilized for this study. The analysis of the nominal data for the research will be descriptive and will help in probing technological advancement and its impact on human employment with the intention of assisting in the elimination of negative effects and enhancement of positive impacts.

Conclusion

Attributable to developments in technology, change will come quicker and influence a much bigger segment of the financial system. Irrespective of its disadvantages, technological advancement has advantages too. For instance, the usual-working hours have lessened noticeably since the introduction of technological expertise and keep on falling with a cutback of labor necessary to satisfy the demand. Nonetheless, advancements in technology have also resulted in loss of employment. For the majority of persons, employment caters for not just nourishment, but is as well associated with distinctiveness, self-respect, and focus. Though it would be achievable to obtain ways for individuals to fund the basic requirements of survival, if occupations and professions fade away, it might lead to unspeakable emotional, monetary, and social stresses. Loss of employment, no matter whether it is redressed, is disconcerting, dehumanizing and unbecoming. If not checked, technological unemployment will generate negative economic and social consequences. Thus, it is vital to establish effective policy interventions to handle this challenge.

References

Bajcsy, R. (2014). Robots Are Coming. Communications of the ACM, 57(5), 42-43.

Brynjolfsson, E., & McAfee, A. (2012). Thriving in the automated economy. Futurist, 46(2), 27-31.

Drum, K. (2013). Terminated. Mother Jones, 38(3), 36-64.

Harris, S. (2014). Robots are coming. Engineering & Technology, 9(1), 48-50.

Ichbiah, D. (2005). Robots: From science fiction to technological revolution. New York: Harry N. Abrams.

Lyons, D. (2011). Who needs humans? As if American workers don’t have it rough enough, with unemployment skyrocketing and jobs moving overseas, now there’s another threat: Robots. New York: The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC.

Marchant, G. E., Stevens, Y. A., & Hennessy, J. M. (2014). Technology, Unemployment & Policy Options: Navigating the Transition to a Better World. Journal of Evolution and Technology, 24(1), 26-44.

Mlot, S. (2014). Will a robot revolution lead to mass unemployment? Retrieved from http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2462210,00.asp

Rotman, D. (2013). How technology is destroying jobs. MIT Technology Review, 116(4), 27-35.

Weissman, W. (2014). How robots will kill tax administration and the funding of Social Insurance–Part II. Employee Benefit Plan Review, 69(1), 23.