Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Book Review: Where Are We and Where Do We Go from Here?

'INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND THE U.S. WORKFORCE' - Where Are We and Where Do We Go from Here?
A study by National Academy of Sciences:

Six general findings emerge from this study.
1. Advances in IT are far from over, and some of the biggest improvements in areas like AI are likely still to come. Improvements are expected in some areas and entirely new capabilities may emerge in others.
2. These advances in technology will result in automation of some jobs, augmentation of workers’ abilities to perform others, and the creation of still others. The ultimate effects of information technology are determined not just by technical capabilities, but also by how the technology is used and how individuals, organizations, and policy makers
prepare for or respond to associated shifts in the economic or social landscape.
3. The recent increase in income inequality in the United States is due to multiple forces, including advances in IT and its diffusion, globalization, and economic policy.
4. IT is enabling new work relationships, including a new form of ondemand employment. Although current digital platforms for on-demand work directly involve less than 1 percent of the workforce, they display significant growth potential.
5. As IT continues to complement or substitute for many work tasks, workers will require skills that increasingly emphasize creativity, adaptability, and interpersonal skills over routine information processing and manual tasks. The education system will need to adapt to prepare individuals for the changing labor market. At the same time, recent IT advances offer new and potentially more widely accessible ways to access education.
6. Policy makers and researchers would benefit significantly from a better understanding of evolving IT options and their implications for the workforce. In particular, (1) sustained, integrated, multidisciplinary research and (2) improved, ongoing tracking of workforce and technology developments would be of great value for informing public policies, organizational choices, and education and training strategies.
It needs to be noted that future changes in especially technological domain is largely unpredictable. Hence, a deep understanding of emerging changes in technology and the workforce is needed, and the society to show a greater degree of resilience.