Opinion Comment

Tuesday 20 February 2018

Ignore the doomsayers - there is little evidence of robots taking over our jobs

Those who foretell of doom in the workplace, owing to robots and artificial intelligence, keep getting it wrong. Photo: AP
Those who foretell of doom in the workplace, owing to robots and artificial intelligence, keep getting it wrong. Photo: AP
Dan O'Brien

Dan O'Brien

'Ireland is the fastest growing economy in Europe." How many times has this been said by government politicians over the past few years? More than anyone could count would be my guess.

While the economy has been doing very well, and is now in its seventh year of uninterrupted growth, it has not been the continent's top performer in the metrics that matter. They include pay growth, which has only recently started picking up, and the clip at which the Government coffers have been filling. Many other European countries have been doing better than Ireland by these indicators of expansion.

By far the most important measure of what is going on in the economy is jobs. The most recent figures - for the middle of last year - show that Ireland fell well down the European growth league table. Just as employment growth across the continent accelerated last year, it slowed in Ireland, according to new figures published on Tuesday.

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