Will self-driving cars steal your job? New study says no


A new study revealed that the rise in use of self-driving cars will not displace workers in the United States, a report read.

“Automated vehicle technology could incorrectly be viewed as a change that will eliminate driving jobs; however, the more nuanced assessment is that over the next decade the innovation will foster broader societal changes resulting in shifts in the workplace and workforce demands,” said Shelia Cotten, MSU Foundation Professor of media and information.

Phys.org said Cotten led the research published by the American Center for Mobility.

Cotten added that, “this level of advanced technology has the potential to lead to the creation of thousands of new jobs in the engineering, data analysis, cybersecurity and vehicle ‘monitoring’ areas. Based on data collected from industry experts during the study, there is already a significant demand in several of these areas related to AVs.”

A separate report added that instead of wrecking the labor market, it will actually “feed the economy, accruing an estimated $800 billion in annual benefits by 2050.”

Erica Groshen of Cornell University and former Commissioner of Labor Statistics said the “challenge is to make the transition as smooth as possible.”

“We have a labor market characterized by churning—continual job creation and destruction,” added Groshen, who also worked on the report.

Christopher Poe, assistant director for Connected and Automated Transportation Strategy, Texas A&M Transportation Institute, said in a report that, “in the near-term there is great potential for these technologies to assist commercial drivers in safely operating trucks. Longer-term it will be important to define, develop and deliver targeted training for the workforce.”

Meanwhile, questions on safety of self-driving or autonomous cars continues to linger as several deaths have been reported due to road accidents.

“If there’s some question about who was in control of the car or some question about whether it was the software or the sensors or the driver had some obligation to be mindful, these kinds of things have come up time and again, and the courts sort them out. In many ways, there are not genuinely difficult puzzles presented by driverless car liability,” said Ryan Calo, an expert in robotics and cyberlaw at the University of Washington Law School in Los Angeles Times report.