Robots Taking Jobs by 2030: Las Vegas Will Be the U.S. City Hit Hardest by Automation

Robots Taking Jobs
iStock.com/PhonlamaiPhoto

Robots taking jobs could have a huge impact on human employees globally by 2030. More than one-third of Americans are at risk of robots replacing human jobs. Las Vegas is the U.S. city that is expected to lose the most jobs due to automation.

The pace and direction of the technological progress in artificial intelligence and robots are uncertain, but the impact of automation on employment is predicted to be very severe. Some 38% of jobs in the U.S. could be at risk, compared to 35% in Germany, 30% in the U.K., and 21% in Japan.

One reason for U.S. jobs being at a higher risk of becoming automated is the vulnerability of U.S. jobs in certain sectors, compared to jobs in the same sectors in other countries. For example, the financial and insurance sectors have a higher possibility of automation in the U.S. than in the U.K. because American finance workers mostly focus on the domestic market, so they don’t need as much education as financial workers in the U.K., who need to deal more with international markets.

Robots will profoundly impact society, leading to job losses in sectors that require various levels of education, including healthcare diagnostics, hospitality, food services, transportation, administration, storage, sales, and education.

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In the U.S., job automation will hit certain metropolitan areas very hard compared to other regions. Lower-wage cities like Las Vegas, Nevada; Orlando, Florida; and Riverside-San Bernardino, California; are expected to be hit hardest in terms of automation-related job loss.

Here is a list of the top 10 U.S. metropolitan cities that are expected to see their jobs automated.

Metropolitan Area Percentage of Jobs That Could Be Automated
1. Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nevada 65.2%
2. El Paso, Texas 63.9%
3. Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, California 62.6%
4. Greensboro-High Point, North Carolina 62.5%
5. North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida 62.4%
6. Bakersfield, California 62.4%
7. Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida 61.8%
8. Fresno, California 61.5%
9. Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, South Carolina 61.3%
10. Louisville, Kentucky & Jefferson County, Indiana 61.3%

Las Vegas Expected to Lose 65% of Its Jobs due to Automation

Within 20 years, more than 65% of Las Vegas jobs could be automated. Most Las Vegas workers work in service sector jobs at hotels, restaurants, or offices—in low-paid positions like cashier, office clerk, or cleaner. Since these kinds of jobs involve repetitive tasks, there is a higher chance that technology will replace human jobs in these sectors.

For example, Las Vegas has around 39,000 retail salespeople, and approximately 36,000 of those positions could be automated by 2035. The jobs of a cashier, cook, and game dealer could become fully automated, but the likelihood of that happening depends on factors like cost and the reactions of customers.

Relatively simple technology, from poker machines to ATMs, has already eliminated different kinds of gaming-related jobs in Las Vegas over the years.

Impact of Automation on Employment

Professor Johannes Moenius, who worked on a study by the Institute for Spatial Economic Analysis (ISEA), said, “We expect an incredible amount of increase in income inequality.” He added, “We’ll likely have an over supply of people without education. Some of them we can train and some we can’t … They’ll have to go into early retirement.”

According to Moenius, Black, Hispanic, and female workers are more at risk of being laid off as robots replace human jobs.

Education will be the most significant factor in the issue of robots taking human jobs. U.S. doctoral degree holders have only a 13% chance of being replaced by robots and artificial intelligence, while Americans who are high school diploma holders only have a 74% chance of losing their jobs to automation.

Food chains like McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE:MCD) already have automated systems for ordering and paying. Silicon Valley company Knightscope, Inc. manufactures robots that can replace security guards. Robotics company Savioke has its “Relay” robots in hotels across the United States. Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has opened an automated grocery store.

It is clear that technological advancements and robots taking human jobs will continue in the future. Workers must be ready to face all the challenges that come, and prepare themselves to deal with them.

Sources:

Robots could take over 38% of U.S. jobs within about 15 years, report says,” Los Angeles Times, March 24, 2017.

Future job automation to hit hardest in low wage metropolitan areas like Las Vegas, Orlando and Riverside-San Bernardino,”Institute for Spatial Economic Analysis, May 3, 2017.

Robots could kill many Las Vegas,” CNN Tech, January 29, 2018.

Robots predicted to replace majority of jobs in the Las Vegas valley,” KSNV, January 30, 2018.

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