AI and the future of work after Covid
An important conversation at a policy and business level as we start to pick through the ways that Covid has changed the business environment for ever, is the impact that Covid has had on labour. The pandemic caused the future of work to arrive early. And in a country with worrying levels of unemployment we must ask to what extent is the pandemic-induced regime of remote work, AI-enabled software, and automation, here to stay? Two ways businesses historically have controlled cost and mitigated uncertainty during recessions are by adopting automation and redesigning work processes, which reduce the share of jobs involving mainly routine tasks. It's a subject that was tackled by local renowned artificial intelligence academic and expert Prof Tshilidzi Marwala in his new book “Closing the Gap: The Fourth Industrial Revolution in Africa”. Prof Marwala is the Vice-Chancellor: Research and Internationalisation at the University of Johannesburg, and a Deputy Chair of the Presidential Commission on 4IR and Michael Averry sat down with him and Johan Steyn, who is currently with IQbusiness, and Chair of The Institute of Information Technology Professionals South Africa Special Interest Group on Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, to talk about AI and the future of work after Covid.