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Dehumanization and unemployment

Dehumanization and unemployment
Digitization may have many benefits and help a lot in the working environment now and
made a lot of tasks way easier, but according to others it rises some concerns and red
flags too. There are conflicts going on between experts that keep rising as digitization
goes steps further into many companies and different fields. One of the most important
issues and concerns is Dehumanization and Unemployment.
Employment is an important factor in ones’ life and without it life is almost impossible.
Through jobs we can do everything, either fulfill our desires or family needs but the
important one is on the personal level as we eventually attain confidence, self-respect &
social status which makes us feel that we have a role and contribution in society. It not
only fetches money for better living but also provides everyday learning and the learning
doesn’t stop at particular age but continues at work also. Job is something where we
continuously gain skills, discover ourselves, our potential and our limit of taking up more
responsibilities and it makes us a responsible citizen. This important part of life some
experts debate that it’s strongly threatened by digitization that is finding its way to almost
all industries and fields nowadays and they are horrified that even as technology evolve
more that human employment and work could be harshly damaged.
One aspect which led to a great deal of debates and discussions in the last years was the
potential impact of digitization on employment. In any organization or company most of
the work used to be carried out by humans from different majors and expertise, but lately
and as technology evolves many of those jobs were replaced by digital systems or robotic
systems where the human became useless and the robot is the one doing the job. In some
cases now robots are not only capable of supporting human tasks, but also they can
gradually replace a lot more human tasks and therefore also many jobs will be lost. There
are two contradicting prospectives here in this discussion on the effects of digitization:
one side finds digitization to be very helpful and that it leads to economic growth,
employment growth as new jobs are created and an acceptable distribution of wealth; the
other point of view states that, digitization leads to fewer jobs as most of the jobs are
taken by machines or robot systems and therefore declining prosperity.
Not only unemployment was the point of debate, but also other concerns were
announced. Digitization can provide great support and improvement at many working
and production fields such as health care, the police, business organizations,
entertainment, and army. But it can also undermine human dignity if it wasn’t applied
under certain frame conditions. Here we are talking about a huge risk of objectifying and
instrumentalizing people or in other words (Dehumanization).
The health care department and sector seems to be concerned and anxious about the fast
changes happening in the field and the high demand happening now for the
implementation of robotics. The crucial fear seems to be because of the way the robotics
are deployed. Coeckelberg (2010) argues that those care robots should only be there for
the routine care tasks. Tasks where no emotional, intimate, personal involvement is
needed. Also as quoted by (Sharkey 2014) “If robots are deployed to replace the
caregiver, there is a risk that care is dehumanized”. When robots take over care involved
tasks such as lifting and feeding, the care receiver can feel like an object. The ethical
complaint about ‘objectification’ ties in with the idea that robots cannot provide care. The
underlying argument is that robots are devices that can’t replicate empathic capacities and
reciprocity of human care relationships. Human contact is usually found to be essential
for providing good care. The patient’s quality of life should therefore be the guiding
principle for robotics in healthcare (Van Wynsberghe 2015). That was an example of why
some people see digitization as a threat.
Now it’s clear that there’s a huge conflict happening between the supporters and opposers
of digitization. But to also clarify and maybe get some solutions to those concerns we can
state the following:
- Robots and machines can never be as smart and creative as human brain. So, its really
hard for machines to take over human jobs as always humans are going to be the base of
any project or company. Machines aren’t innovative and can never build an enterprise,
and many jobs will always need human beings to make decisions or show sympathy or be
wise in dealing with money and setting plans for an enterprise. The jobs lost to
digitization can cause a shift in the whole working environment so other working
opportunities would be created, but sadly still some people would lose their jobs.
- Regarding dehumanization, with everyday evolution of technology and robots, all the
fields that need more care related services can be done with robotic systems that are
programmed in a certain polite way to comfort the receiver of the service and also there
could be humans assisting so this way we will have job opportunities for people and at
the same time increase work efficiency with the digitization system set.
The impact of digitization on employment and dehumanization is still a field of debate,
but this was just a glimpse of what’s going on between the two teams of opinions inside
the field right now. Maybe soon we can reach a point where we have employment rates at
a stable point while also implementing the digitization system and get it to be controlled
by humans when needed for care services, to get the maximum benefits of everything and
be a win-win situation.