A NEW study has revealed the British cities where the risk of a robot stealing your job by 2030 is highest – and it’s bad news for the North.
Research by the Centre for Cities think-tank shows how employment outside of England’s southern cities could be decimated over the next 12 years.
The ten cities with the biggest risk of robot redundancies are all based in the Midlands or the North.
But the safest cities are almost entirely based in the South, with the exception of a few key hubs like Edinburgh and York.
The fear is that the pace of low-skilled jobs being replaced by machines and computer systems will ramp up more quickly in areas that are already struggling economically.
Andrew Carter, Chief Executive of Centre for Cities, said: “Automation and globalisation will bring huge opportunities to increase prosperity and jobs, but there is also a real risk that many people and places will lose out.”
“The time to act is now – national and local leaders need to ensure that people in cities across the North and Midlands can share the benefits these changes could offer.”
These are the top 10 cities most likely to experience job losses thanks to automation, along with the share of jobs likely to be lost by 2030:
10. Telford – 25%
9. Huddersfield – 25%
8. Dundee – 25%
7. Northampton – 26%
6. Blackburn – 26%
5. Doncaster – 27%
4. Stoke – 28%
3. Wakefield – 29%
2. Sunderland – 29%
1. Mansfield – 29%
All those cities are far above the nationwide average of jobs expected to be lost to robots, which is currently estimated to be around 21%.
The cities least at risk are listed below, again set alongside the share of jobs likely to be lost by 2030:
10. Portsmouth – 19%
9. York – 19%
8. Blackpool – 19%
7. Brighton – 19%
6. Edinburgh – 18%
5. London – 16%
4. Worthing – 16%
3. Reading – 15%
2. Cambridge – 13%
1. Oxford – 13%
According to the researchers, successful cities in the South are “better placed” to bag high-skilled, high-paying jobs in the future.
For instance, nearly half of the jobs expected to come to Cambridge by 2030 are “highly-skilled private sector” positions.
Meanwhile, cash-strapped cities in the North and the Midlands are more likely to see growth in low-skilled jobs, which puts them at risk.
This means we could see the gap in living standards and wages between the South and North “widen in the coming decades”.
Carter says the solution is to give cities “more powers and resources” to tackle the issues of automation and globalisation.
“In an evermore divided country, it’s increasingly clear that a one-size-fits-all approach from central government is inadequate to address the myriad issues that different places face.”
“The challenges and opportunities ahead for Blackburn are very different to those for Brighton.”