RBC report shows women can be helped, hurt by workforce automation

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TORONTO — RBC Economics today released a report that explored the impact automation and artificial intelligence could have on women in the workplace.

“The nature of work is changing. Like all other nations, Canada needs to think strategically about how best to use one of its biggest assets — human capital,” said Dawn Desjardins, deputy chief economist.

“Automation is upending established ways of working, and our research suggests that about half of all jobs in Canada will change significantly in the years ahead,” she explained.

“Technological disruption will naturally impact both men and women in the labor force. But our analysis shows that women are at greater risk as they hold more than half of the 35% of Canadian jobs that face an elevated threat from automation,”said Desjardins.

“This isn’t to say that women who’ve already overcome historical and social obstacles will see their labor market gains undone by new technologies,” she added. “Our work shows that women may be better positioned than men for the jobs of the future.

“Our view is supported by evidence that generalist, digital and social skills — the skills that women already use to a greater extent — will be in high demand. Helping women make the transition, however, will require a shift in how talent is evaluated,” said Desjardins.

The free report is available at www.rbc.com.

Greg Gerber

Greg Gerber

A journalist who has covered the recreation vehicle industry since January 2000, Greg Gerber founded RV Daily Report on April Fool's Day in 2009. He also serves as the editor of the publication and website. As an Eagle Scout, he has enjoyed camping for decades and has visited every state except Hawaii. A DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three young women, he has two grandchildren as well. He currently splits his time between Wisconsin, Texas and Arizona. Greg can be reached at editor@rvdailyreport.com.

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