As some information technology professionals examine the world’s job market, they may notice that the innovative solutions they know and love could be acting as a double-edged sword when it comes to employment. On one hand, a number of leaders across the globe believe in the benefits that the IT sector could bring to overall economy, creating more positions for individuals seeking employment. On the other, certain economists warn that the progression of technology could ultimately lead to job destruction. With both sides presenting reasonable points that support their theories, it is still unclear exactly how developments within the tech field will influence international employment in the long run.
Obama promotes employment with tech hubs
In the United States, President Obama has made a concerted effort to spur IT advancement so that the country not only progresses for innovation’s sake, but also for that of employment. According to TechRepublic, the nation’s leader took his first step in promoting development within the tech industry in 2013, when he launched an initiative to found an IT hub in Youngstown, Ohio. A year later, Obama is now making moves to branch out, aiming to form additional hubs and ultimately creating a network. That being said, some individuals question whether the initial investment in Youngstown has actually paid off in terms of driving employment, casting a shadow of doubt on expansion of these efforts.
The U.S. president’s original center in Youngstown was the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute. While one of the primary hopes for this facility was to encourage job growth, it currently only has 20 employees on staff. In light of this low number, some individuals are unsure of how to interpret the outcomes of this hub. Regardless of the new positions directly resulting from this facility, John McNally, mayor of Youngstown, pointed out other pros of this endeavor.
“What we want to do is really encourage the growth of a regional, technical, industrial community,” McNally stated, according to TechRepublic.
Even though the IT hub has not lead to significant spikes in employment, it has done wonders to foster bonds within the community and draw attention to an area that has been economically stagnant for some time. By having this outlet in Youngstown, locals hope to gain more notoriety on the state and national levels, which could pique academics and other businesses’ interest in the area. In the end, this hub may promote further economic development in the general vicinity and add jobs indirectly.
It is due to the latter concept that Obama plans to establish six additional IT hubs throughout the U.S. While the effects on employment may not be immediate, he is hoping that this goal will eventually be realized.
Is IT putting European jobs in jeopardy?
As the U.S. aims to leverage the expansion of the IT industry so that it can drive employment, economists across the pond fear that ongoing innovation may actually cut jobs. According to CNN, Klaus Schwab, chief executive of the World Economic, explained that rapid progress made in this field has impeded Europe’s economic recovery in the wake of the Great Recession.
“We have such a technological revolution going on at this moment,” explained Schwab, as cited by the source. “This will destroy employment. We have to make sure that the destroyed employment is replaced by better jobs and that’s not happening at the moment.”
As advancements in IT streamline functions for businesses through automation and other technological solutions, they appear to be rendering more basic EU jobs irrelevant. If companies do not continue to grow themselves, adding more sophisticated roles that cannot be filled by machine power, then the continent will finally be able to bounce back from the dip its market took.
IT professionals throughout the U.S. should keep in mind that the prolonged job issues afflicting the EU do not necessarily indicate that similar problems will occur in their nation. The U.S. employment situation – although not perfect – has shown substantial signs of recovery unlike European economies. Despite incredible tech developments made in the U.S., unemployment has dropped, suggesting that advancements in this sector may not be as destructive for this nation as economists anticipate for those in Europe.
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