Authors: Laura Iancu & Lucian Despoiu
Highly motivated and skilled humans who want to make a difference are actively preoccupied about their jobs and career opportunities in the actual context of automation. They have much to offer societies, from innovation to creativity to new thinking. Whether or not they’re happy or scared about jobs automation is highly related to a number of factors: potential, self-confidence, motivation, intelligence, education level, job role, options.
People who are happy about automation easily embrace it, they’ll know what to do with their extra time on their hands, while people lacking options are in fear of losing one of the few options they have and they cling to whatever is available to them.
And let’s dive deep into data structures!
With 7.2 billion people on Earth, how many available jobs do you think there are at this very moment? Well… how about around 5 billion jobs? And guess what? The statistics show that by 2025 we will lose over 5 million jobs to automation! Not such huge numbers for the jobs we are going to lose, but a reality. And everyone keeps talking about the jobs we are going to lose. This could help. But how about the ones we can win while moving from broad concerns to more specific questions and actions? The jobs related to innovation and knowledge creation, the jobs that can simplify our life, the jobs that can contribute to the progress of the humanity, the jobs that make use of our creativity while anchored in today’s reality. Moving from ‘Will AI lead to the end of work?’ to ‘What can we do to benefit from AI?’ can guide us to a certain level of fear. However, the point isn’t to fear the future but to analyse the full picture and find ways that you may be able to help humanity to design a better future.
Moving from ‘Will AI lead to the end of work?’ to ‘What can we do to benefit from AI?’
Many of the greatest careers for professionals of the future will involve work that directly contributes to our sustainability in a collective manner while being transformed by factors such as human ageing, but also longevity, growing “sharing economy,” the rise of project-based work and freelance, the expanded use of blockchain technology for the economic transactions, and, of course, an exponential growth in big data collection related to nearly all areas of our lives.
So, imagine floating houses on cushions of clouds, mobile skyscrapers, space elevators to orbital hotels, entirely immersive VR experiences, real “avatars” and robot cops. Imagine more than that. Imagine everything you can’t imagine, and it can become a reality in no time. All these new images will doubtlessly emerge based on what fun-minded visionaries imagine as being part of humanity’s finest future. Occupations that arise from these factors will be some of the coolest jobs that have ever existed on planet Earth (and not only). So, let’s play an imagination game together and imagine… jobs! With the mention that we should think of any of these proposals as they could convert in some very interesting and rewarding career choices of the future.
Back in time, your job was to do whatever you were told. Just follow instructions, keep your head down, don’t make waves. The description of the best employee of the past. But today things are completely different. We live the days where playing it safe is irresponsibly dodgy. Uber disrupted the taxi industry, AirBnb disrupted the hotel industry, e-mail disrupted the post office, eBooks disrupted the traditional publishing. The internet disrupted almost everything.
The role of a disruptor would be to introduce chaotic changes in the organizations that promote more innovation, collaboration, creativity and risk-taking. Disruptors, with their curiosity and creative spirit, will shake the status quo, will fast adapt and improvise, will challenge rules, assumptions, risks, fears, will push the boundaries. Disrupt the norm or be disrupted.
Organ body part creator/manufacturer
Scientists have already had some favourable results at creating kidneys, livers, hearts in their labs. They’ve even grown skin, ears, and many other external body parts. There are also results to change the colour of the eyes. Very soon, doctors may be able to order up custom organs that are 3D-printed or grown using their patients’ own cells.
The role of an organ body part creator will be to manufacture fast whatever humans will need at certain points in time, to improve their lives or simply save them.
Mind Uploading Specialist
Copy-and-transfer or gradual replacement of neurons? Among some experts, mind uploading is treated as an important proposed life extension technology. Some believe mind uploading is humanity’s current best option for preserving the identity of the species, as opposed to cryonics. Another aim of mind uploading is to provide a permanent backup to our “mind-file”, to enable interstellar space travels, and a means for human culture to survive a global disaster by making a functional copy of human society in a Matryoshka brain, i.e. a computing device that consumes all energy from a star (Wikipedia, YYYY).
Some people might even have their minds transferred into clones of themselves, synthetic organisms with artificial brains, or special cybernetic robots designed to extend their consciousness, all these while taking into consideration ethical, political, economic, and philosophical implications.
The role of a mind uploading specialist will be to transfer “mind files” from a brain to the same brain back or to another brain and body or even to a cyborg.
- Pharmaceutical Designer
Have you ever wondered how a plant from the ocean becomes a medication that a doctor prescribes to treat diseases? Even though the actual pharma careers will continue to exist to serve people, except the mass-produced medicines, we can think of drugs that could be developed based on someone’s genetics, including medical history, but also habits and stem cells.
The role of a pharmaceutical designer will be to discover, develop and manufacture customized drugs for people, create targeted treatments while having the recompense of spending their time looking for ways to help humans fight disease and stay in good health.
Perfume City Expert
The fragrance is both an art and a science, ‘Smell is a potent wizard that transports you across thousands of miles and all the years you have lived’, said Helen Keller, while Barillé wrote: ‘The magic of fragrance comes from the relationship between man and nature’. Clear fact: scents can create comfortable relationships with the places.
Imagine you walk around city streets, exchanging smiles while you feel the wafting aroma of buttery croissants emitted by a bakery or perfumes like acacia, linden tree blossoms, cedarwood, or pink peppercorns on every street of the city you are. For example, in Taipei, Taiwan, no matter where you roam, there is no way you can miss the elegant smell of tea among its streets and alleys. And you’ll smell lovely burning scents almost everywhere you go in Bali, Indonesia. It’s a magic time in Houston, US when the jasmine blooms. Walls, carpets, and thick tapestries of sweetly scented jasmine bloom across the city in April and May. They perfume the air and disappear all too quickly into the heat of summer, but the memory of their blossoms remains.
In the future, we might expand and recreate the scent of Mars, Mercury, the Moon or any place in the universe, provided we have the right chemical information. Astronauts have consistently reported strange odour after lengthy spacewalks, bringing it back in on their suits, helmets, gloves and tools. It’s bitter, smoky, metallic smell — like seared steak, hot metal and arc welding smoke all rolled into one, easy to be recreated. In fact, we can even recreate the smell of the heart of the galaxy — astronomers searching for amino acids in Sagittarius B2, a vast gas and dust cloud in the middle of the Milky Way, have reported that due to a substance called ethyl formate, it smells and tastes of raspberries and rum — much more pleasant than seared steak and metal. (“What Does Space Smell Like?”, 2012)
The role of a PCE (Perfume City Expert) will be to create and re-create different smells at city levels, giving unique experiences to all inhabitants, sweetening the city streets to make them more overtly euphoric. How would you like to perfume your street?
We are creating a new society
Whether or not precisely these visions become reality, the fact is that we are moving fast in this direction, giving the society a characteristic flavour. And just as we must make and break our relationships with things, places, people and organizations at an ever more rapid pace, we must turn over our conceptions of real-world, our mental images of the reality at shorter and shorter intervals. Everything around us demands a new level of adaptability, mental elasticity, creativity and imagination. We are creating a new society. Not a changed society, not an extended one, but a new society. Why not have most human workers working less and retiring earlier? There is greatly more to life than working forever…
Will you quit your actual job for any of the ones mentioned above and become part of the new society?