Robots May Drive Bigger Wedge Between Rich and Poor
May 21, 2015•7 min
Robots are having a moment. They're breaking hearts in the movie "Ex Machina," splayed across the pages of The New York Times and filling the airwaves with a series from NPR's Planet Money on robots' role in the workforce. It's a story we've heard before: since the days of the Industrial Revolution, machines have threatened to take our jobs. But in the 21st century, this is not your great-grandfather's robot. A recent paper by economists at Columbia and Boston University claims the kinds of robots being made these days might actually increase income inequality. And another study found that nearly half of U.S. employment could be a risk of being computerized. Money Talking host Charlie Herman asks Stacey Vanek Smith from Planet Money and Cardiff Garcia with the Financial Times what kinds of robots could threaten to edge out workers, and whether the government should step in and help.