According to a report by Goldman Sachs, the widespread use of generative AI and services based on it — like ChatGPT and Midjourney — could result in up to 300 million people worldwide losing their jobs.
CNBC reported on the findings, which suggested that two-thirds of jobs in the US and Europe could be automated to some degree. Occupations requiring a lot of physical labour, the service sector, and cleaning jobs were considered the most at risk, along with administrative and office-based positions. The report also predicted that generative AI could create new jobs and boost global GDP by 7%.
Although technological progress has historically led to new jobs, analysts at Goldman Sachs identified certain professions that could be hit harder than others. In the US, office and administrative support positions were considered the most vulnerable, with 46% of tasks that could be automated. Legal work followed closely behind at 44%, with architecture and design professions at 37%. In Europe, office jobs were also identified as being at risk, with just 4% of manual labour jobs considered automatable. Overall, 24% of jobs in Europe could be automated.
Developed countries were expected to feel the impact of automation more strongly than developing nations, with workers in Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Sweden, and the US among those most likely to be affected. However, the exact extent of the impact will depend on the timing and implementation of new technologies.
The report also noted that AI could lead to increased labour productivity growth over time and a boost to global GDP. While using AI services may lead to job losses in the short term, it may also create new opportunities and benefits in the long run.