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Report
17 June 2015

Working on the robot society

Visions and insights from science concerning the relationship between technology and employment
Robots Automation
The labour market will be increasingly influenced by robots. We are facing a technological revolution and must ask ourselves how we as a society will deal with this. That, in a nutshell, is the gist of this report. The Rathenau Instituut has drawn up this report at the request of the House of Representatives of the Dutch Parliament.

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Summary

The study shows that information technology, such as robots and the internet, contributes to the growth of labour productivity. The consensus among economists that innovation does not lead to the loss of jobs has, however, been crumbling since 2010. The impact of information technology on labour varies. Chiefly jobs at the level of medium skilled jobs are under pressure. In addition, information technology allows the internationalization and flexibilization of labour.

According to the Rathenau Instituut, the robot society is coming. The institute calls on the political community to make this a positive prospect and a starting point that can provide direction. History shows that this can be done by investing in socially responsible innovation, in education, and in a focus on sharing costs and benefits.

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