Artificial intelligence advancement is not brand-new, but its speed is picking up at unprecedented rates. Almost daily are reports of new levels of artificial intelligence being used in the workplace, and the trend is now unchangeable. It is as though the imminent future is unfolding before our eyes. Obsolescence in education and employment in the face of artificial intelligent advancements is something to start thinking about.
I have this uncomfortable feeling about the seemingly indifferent attitude of education and employment officials in the face of artificial intelligence. I cannot see or hear a sense of urgency among both education and business leaders approximating the risks of the onrushing tidal wave of artificial intelligence and robot replacements for our labour force.
Of obsolescence in education and employment in artificial intelligence.
Let’s think about the state of education and employment in the face of artificial intelligence. There is a stream of reports from around the world about disappearing jobs. This is not because of business reversals, but because the jobs are being taken over by technology or robots. One example is that hundreds of thousands of positions are at risk as online techniques are being resorted to by bank account holders going to machines instead of tellers and customer service representatives.
This development is being replicated in many other businesses, even fast food outlets like McDonald’s. Another good example is the growing impact of online shopping that is stealing away business and employment in physical stores in malls and elsewhere. It is not just a trend; it is the future right in our faces.
I feel that it is so shortsighted to look at professions and positions in companies without connecting the dots to both what technology is about to penetrate the market on the one hand and what kind of skill sets of human employees would become necessary in the future.
We need to look at the near future with urgent concern and then look at what kind of workers should we become when technology and robots become better options than human beings. This is why obsolescence in education and employment in the face of artificial intelligence advances is a real-life issue.
What can we do about obsolescence in education and employment?
So here we are, what then can we do about artificial intelligence versus our education and employment? It is not only about our workers in the next five to ten years, but it is also more importantly about our students who are preparing to be workers eventually. Our students must not be educated to become the obsolete worker ten to fifteen years from now. This mindset will not do us any good.
It becomes apparent that those who are in charge of education need to change the educational systems because our future graduates will be competing with significantly superior artificial intelligence when they start to work. But we are left behind in education; production and economic activity, there will be a lot to pay.
The future of education and employment
Most African countries are now trying to make manufacturing an essential industry, vital to our security. Well, the manufacturing industry will be affected by artificial intelligence and robotics. We will be producers, maybe even better and more celebrated producers, but it will be driven by technology and artificial intelligence. This only leaves one thing, heads must roll. It will be sad if we have to make this another reason why we have a crisis of having a job of wanting one.
The service industry, on the other hand, maybe our brightest area. In light of this thought, if we do not drastically design a new educational format, we are virtually dooming the younger generation to a contest where they cannot possibly win. I believe that it is high time we look into employing artificial intelligent in education and employment.
Question: will our government and business leaders force employers to hire human beings when machines are available and being employed by their competitors all around the world?