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South Korea, Singapore, Germany and Canada are better prepared for the rise of machines, thanks largely to their education systems and labor policies, the authors of the Automation Readiness Index concluded.
Researchers graded the nations on three main categories: their innovation environment, which included money spent on research and development; school policies, from early curricula to lifelong learning programs; and public workforce development, such as government-led efforts to retrain workers.
No country is "genuinely ready" for the technological shift that is expected to displace millions of workers worldwide in the next three decades, they found — but the United States is especially underprepared for the jobs of the future.
Guido Jouret, ABB's chief digital officer, singled out the U.S. education system, which pushes students toward two- or four-year degrees. Colleges tend to be less nimble when it comes to keeping up with technological changes, and companies will seek workers who can adapt to cutting-edge developments.
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