Princeton University has published a new study that raises alarms about the future of certain professions. Researchers have identified 20 professions that are most at risk of extinction due to the development of artificial intelligence (AI). According to the study, call center operators are in the most dangerous situation, followed by teachers of various disciplines, including law, history, religion and languages.
The study has caught the public’s attention because it highlights the multifaceted impact of AI on the workplace. In some cases, AI will completely replace work previously done by humans, and in other cases, it will complement work done by humans. Recent advances in AI-assisted language modeling have generated a lot of interest and controversy.
To determine the degree of automation of different occupations, researchers built an algorithm that linked 10 AI-based applications to 52 human abilities. In this way, it was possible to assess the extent to which AI could replace specific skills that are required in a particular profession.
Interestingly, many of the jobs at risk are high-paying and require a significant level of education. These include budget analysts, actuaries, accountants, and judges. However, when the algorithm was adjusted to reflect recent advances in language modeling, the list of at-risk occupations changed significantly.
According to the study, call center workers were found to be the most vulnerable. This is not surprising given that many companies are already using AI-powered chatbots to fulfill the responsibilities of the role. However, the study authors suggest that human telemarketers could make better use of language modeling if it were used to improve their performance. For example, real-time customer responses could be used to provide relevant hints to the telemarketer.
Of the 20 professions listed in the study, 14 were higher education professors in a variety of disciplines, including geography, religion, history, English, and sociology. The study authors note that education professions are likely to be more impacted by the development of language modeling than other professions.
The study has attracted the attention of the academic community and the public. It was published shortly after researchers from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) revealed their findings on the professions most and least likely to be replaced by robots.