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被机器人取代,商业精英们的压力愈发严重

路透社 2017年02月20日

随着科技的进步和机器的不断发展,让人们体会到了促进生产力提高所带来的好处,但是,这种趋势也给工作带来了间接的损害,它意味着越来越多的工种将面临被取代的风险。在今年1月的达沃斯世界经济论坛上,不少商界精英对此表达了深深的担忧。

过去十年间,人们将失业归罪于开放市场和全球贸易的发展,但全球各大公司的CEO们则认为,罪魁祸首是机器的不断发展和进步。

今年1月,商界领袖在达沃斯参加本年度世界经济论坛(WEF)时,一方面畅谈科技促进生产力提高所带来的好处,另一方面也警醒人们,需更加重视科技给工作带来的间接损害。

机器人、无人驾驶汽车、人工智能和3D打印等技术意味着越来越多的工种将面临被取代的风险,无论是出租车司机,还是医疗保健专业人员。

例如,阿迪达斯打算利用3D打印技术完成部分跑鞋的制造。

慧与公司(Hewlett Packard Enterprise)的CEO梅格·惠特曼表示,“工作机会要么会消失,要么会发生演化。这一变革将影响我们每个人,且没有止境,不分阶层。”

一些唐纳德·特朗普和脱欧的支持者们期待,新一届政府的政策能够将本地失去的工作机会带回到美国铁锈地带(制造带)和英国北部工业区,而世界经济论坛的年度风险报告显示,据经济学家估计,美国制造业中86%的失业是由生产力提高造成的。

安永咨询公司(EY)董事长马克·温伯格最近曾表示,“科技是个大问题,而我们却拒不承认。”他认为我们过去有一种倾向,即总是把问题归咎于贸易伙伴。

在当今政治背景下,CEO们为了跟上指数级增长的科技发展步伐,在对待员工长期培训方面,不得不更加谨慎。

微软CEO萨蒂亚·纳德拉向路透社记者表示,“我认为在目前所处的时代,我们一生中都不得不寻找其他职业道路。”

过去十年间,科技发展是导致工作机会丧失的首要因素。达信保险经纪公司(Marsh)的全球风险官约翰·德兹克对此观点的认同有过之而无不及。

“这将带来挑战,特别考虑到当今的政治背景。”德兹克表示,他曾协助撰写世界经济论坛的报告。

比起通过加强国界管理来限制移民,如何应对科技对就业造成的破坏性影响可能更加难以掌控。

在短期内,虽然很多高科技技术仍然比低技术或中等技术劳动力的成本要高,但随着成本下降,这种转变很有可能会加速。

不断扩大的差距

参加达沃斯论坛的各公司高管表示,科技进步要求政府、企业和学术机构共同培养教育程度更高和具备更高技术能力的工作人员。

而这种向技术人员的转变也进而扩大了收入差距,并加剧了发展的不平衡性。

万宝盛华(ManpowerGroup)人力资源公司CEO乔纳斯·普莱辛表示,在美国,接受过大学教育人员中,失业率为大约2-2.5%,而在技能水平较低或不具备技能的人中,失业率高达9-10%。

普莱辛说:“事实上,将禁止自动化作为制造业发展的一部分,并不在我们的讨论范围内。”

他指出,在丹麦和意大利等国实施的政策中,一项重点内容就是增强工人的就业能力。

“(针对失业工人的问题)如果我们不承担起责任,差距只会变得越来越大。”宝洁公司(Procter & Gamble)首席执行官大卫·泰勒说。

体力和脑力

对于世界经济论坛上所指的“第四次工业革命”带来的就业风险,其范围尚不明确。“第四次工业革命”模糊了物理、数字和生物领域的界限。

牛津大学2013年的一项研究表明,近一半的美国就业机会面临被取代的风险,而2015年福雷斯特研究公司(Forrester Research)则预测,到2025年,就业岗位的净减少率仅为7%,这是因为某些消失的岗位将会被新岗位所替代。

福雷斯特预测,到2019年,四分之一的工作将交由软件机器人、实体机器人或客户服务自动化完成。

即便是精英阶层也无法做到高枕无忧。

“尽管CEO们有理由相信我们不会被人工智能所取代,”伦敦劳埃德保险公司(Lloyd's of London)的印加·比尔说道。

“但我确信会有这么一天的!” (财富中文网)

作者:路透社

译者:司慧杰/汪皓

Open markets and global trade have been blamed for job losses over the last decade, but global CEOs say the real culprits are increasingly machines.

And while business leaders gathered at the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos relish the productivity gains technology can bring, they warned this week that the collateral damage to jobs needs to be addressed more seriously.

From taxi drivers to healthcare professionals, technologies such as robotics, driverless cars, artificial intelligence and 3-D printing mean more and more types of jobs are at risk.

Adidas, for example, aims to use 3-D printing in the manufacture of some running shoes.

"Jobs will be lost, jobs will evolve and this revolution is going to be ageless, it's going to be classless and it's going to affect everyone," said Meg Whitman, chief executive of Hewlett Packard Enterprise

So while some supporters of Donald Trump and Brexit may hope new government policies will bring lost jobs back to America's Rust Belt or Britain's industrial north, economists estimate 86% of U.S. manufacturing job losses are actually down to productivity, according to the WEF's annual risks report.

"Technology is the big issue and we don't acknowledge that." Mark Weinberger, chairman of consultancy EY, said recently, arguing there was a tendency to always blame trading partners.

The political backdrop is prompting CEOs to take more seriously the challenge of long-life training of workforces to keep up with the exponential growth of technological advances.

"I think what we're reaching now is a time when we may have to find alternative careers through our lifetime," Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella told Reuters.

Over the last decade, more jobs have been lost to technology than any other factor, and John Drzik, head of global risk at insurance broker Marsh, expects more of the same.

"That is going to raise challenges, particularly given the political context." Drzik, who helped compile the WEF report, said.

Compared to clamping down on immigration by tightening borders, dealing with the impact of technology destroying jobs is something that is perhaps even less easily controlled.

For while many advanced technologies remain more expensive than low- or medium-skilled labour in the near term, the shift is likely to accelerate as costs come down.

Widening Gap

Technological advancements require governments, businesses and academic institutions to develop more educated and highly skilled workforces, executives in Davos said.

But this shift to skilled workers also widens the income gap and fuels growing inequality.

Jonas Prising, CEO of staffing firm ManpowerGroup, noted that U.S. unemployment is only about 2-2.5% among college-educated people but 9-10% among those with low or no skills.

"The idea that we would ban automation as part of an evolution within the manufacturing industry, is not really part of the discussion," Prising said.

He pointed to policies in countries like Denmark and Italy, where there is a focus on employability of workers.

"If we don't own responsibility (for the problem of displaced workers), it's only going to get bigger." Procter & Gamble Chief Executive David Taylor said.

Brawn and Brain

The scope of the employment risk from what the WEF calls the "fourth industrial revolution" which "blurs the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres" is unclear.

A University of Oxford study in 2013 said nearly half of U.S. jobs were at risk, while in 2015 Forrester Research predicted a net loss of only 7% by 2025, as some lost jobs will be replaced with new ones.

Forrester predicts that by 2019, one-quarter of all job tasks will be offloaded to software robots, physical robots, or customer self-service automation.

Even the corner office may not be safe.

"CEOs feel reasonably confident we are not going to be replaced by artificial intelligence," Inga Beale, CEO of the Lloyd's of London insurance market, said.

"But I'm sure there will be a time!"

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