Robots are coming to work. Is a guaranteed income far behind?

The University of British Columbia’s Henry Siu studies robots and the workplace. The labour economist is one of many growing uneasy about what will happen to millions of jobs with the rise of warehouse robots, checkout screens, fast-food delivery gadgets, flying drones, driverless cars and ultrasophisticated professional software. A great deal of work that requires repetitive tasks — including blue-collar jobs in manufacturing plants and white-collar work in sales, service and administration — is increasingly being taken over by machines, Siu says. It’s a chilling vision on this Canadian Labour Day. And Siu says the trend may only get worse in the next recession, which is when desperate employers usually take the plunge and replace workers with various forms of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Men are proving more vulnerable than women…

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