The Technical Potential for Automation

Report from the McKinsey Technical Institute The speed with which automation technologies are emerging, and the extent to which they could disrupt the world of work, may appear daunting but is not unprecedented. Technological change has reshaped the workplace continually over the past two centuries since the Industrial Revolution, and even earlier (see Box 1, “What history teaches us about the effect of technological change on work, employment, and productivity”). Nonetheless, the latest technological developments will touch every job in every sector and in every country. The advances we described in the previous chapter all have practical applications in...

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