Opinion Colum Kenny

Sunday 21 January 2018

Colum Kenny: New jobs need new thinking and better use of resources

What we need is an enterprise partnership based on solid educational principles, writes Colum Kenny

LAST week Taiwanese company Foxconn announced plans to have one million robots doing its basic manufacturing work for clients such as Apple and Sony within three years. The news is a brutal reminder that workers are now not needed to do some jobs.

So how can we educate Irish children to give them the best possible chance of finding a job, and even of staying and working in Ireland? How do we prepare young people to cope with a complex world in which there is too little paid work to go around?

For one thing, we need to be coherent and sophisticated about what we are doing. Those who believe that Ireland has some kind of innate advantage over Third World countries need to think again. Workers being replaced by robots at Foxconn, a company that employs more than one million Chinese, will be chasing jobs that the IDA and Irish government ministers think should be ours.

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