Digital Disruption In White Collar Jobs

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Tech disruption heads for the professions. Doctors, lawyers, accountants now face real digital competition.

"The Future of the Professions" discusses how technology is transforming the work of professionals in the 21st century. (Pixabay)
"The Future of the Professions" discusses how technology is transforming the work of professionals in the 21st century. (Pixabay)

We know what’s happened to so many blue collar jobs in America. If they haven’t gone abroad, they’ve been automated away. Taken over by machines. Now that same smart machine takeover is lining up to hit the professions, say my guests today. To hit lawyers and doctors.  Accountants, consultants, architects, educators, journalists. All they say, are lined up to take a hit. It may be good for spreading knowledge around. But the fallout? Up next On Point: when machines take on the professions.
-Tom Ashbrook


Richard Susskind, co-author of "The Future of the Professions." Author, speaker and independent adviser to major professional firms and national governments. (@richardsusskind)

Daniel Susskind, co-author of "The Future of the Professions." Lecturer in economics at Balliol College in Oxford. (@danielsusskind)

From Tom's Reading List

The Economist: Professor Dr Robot QC — "In 1933, as the Depression ground on, two British sociologists, Alexander Carr-Saunders and Paul Wilson, wrote a book celebrating the professions. They describe them as 'stable elements' in a turbulent world, which 'inherit, preserve and hand on a tradition.' They act as 'centres of resistance to crude forces which threaten steady and peaceful evolution'."

Financial Post: Richard and Daniel Susskind plot a future for professions that may startle tiger moms — "The book identifies eight broad patterns and 30 particular trends associated with the radical changes that are now coursing through the professions. But the authors also ask questions that few others dare to ask: Why do we have professions in the first place? Are those reasons still valid in the 21st Century?"

The Guardian: Welcome to the robot-based workforce: Will your job become automated too? — "Telemarketers, accountants, sports referees, legal secretaries, and cashiers were found to be among the most likely to lose their jobs, while doctors, preschool teachers, lawyers, artists, and clergy remained relatively safe."


Read An Excerpt Of “The Future Of The Professions” By Richard Susskind And Daniel Susskind

This program aired on April 18, 2016.


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