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The Risk of Automation in Latin America

December 13, 2021

  Leonardo Gasparini, Irene Brambilla, Andrés César, Guillermo Falcone, Carlo Lombardo

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This paper characterizes workers’ vulnerability to automation in the near future in the six largest Latin American economies as a function of the exposure to routinization of the tasks that they perform and the potential automation of their occupation.

The authors combine (i) indicators of potential automatability by occupation and (ii) worker’s information on occupation and other labor variables. They find that the ongoing process of automation is likely to significantly affect the structure of employment. In particular, unskilled and semi-skilled workers are likely to bear a disproportionate share of the adjustment costs. Automation will probably be a more dangerous threat for equality than for overall employment.

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