Why Europe Must End Its 30-Year Digital Winter to Ensure Its Long-Run Future

ECB: No Evidence That AI Has Led to Job Cuts … Yet

artificial intelligence

A new report says fears that artificial intelligence will end human employment might be overblown.

The study, published Tuesday (Nov. 28) by the European Central Bank (ECB) says that although the speedy embrace of artificial intelligence (AI) might lead to lower wages, it has so far created jobs rather than eliminating them.

The ECB studied 16 countries in Europe and found that employment in industries connected to AI increased, primarily among higher-skilled jobs. Lower and medium-skilled jobs were mostly unaffected, the study found.

“For wages, the evidence is less clear and suggests neutral to slightly negative impacts,” says the study, titled “Reports of AI ending human labour may be greatly exaggerated.”

“These results do not amount to an acquittal: AI-enabled technologies continue to be developed and adopted. Most of their impact on employment and wages — and therefore on growth and equality — has yet to be seen.”

The report follows some bold predictions from within the AI world about the technology’s potential impact on the working world.

For example, a pair of OpenAI executives predicted last month that AI will within 10 years be able to do any job a human can thanks to the advent of “artificial general intelligence” or AGI.

“We’re big believers that you give people better tools, and they do things that astonish you,” CEO Sam Altman said at The Wall Street Journal’s Tech Live Conference, per the report. “And I think AGI will be the best tool humanity has yet created.”

At the same time, Altman and Chief Technology Officer Mira Murati said that AI needs to be developed with care, with builders addressing the potential pitfalls, reducing risks, sharing safety techniques with others, and making sure the regulatory and societal infrastructure keeps up with the technology.

Meanwhile, Tesla CEO and X owner Elon Musk last month had a conversation with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak about the risks and future implications of AI in which Musk predicted that AI would one day render all jobs obsolete.

He spoke of a time when AI will become smarter than the smartest person, leading to a situation where “you can have a job if you want a job . . . but AI will be able to do everything,” he said.