America’s 20 Fastest-Growing Jobs May Surprise You

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is out with its most recent ranking of the 20 fastest-growing occupations in the U.S.. Coming in at #1, with median pay of $83,580 a year and a growth rate of 53 percent between now and 2022: “Industrial-organizational psychologists.” What the heck is that?

Whatever it is, its growth rate beats that of every other occupation, including personal care aids (49 percent), home health aides (48 percent), diagnostic medical sonographers (46 percent), stonemasons (43 percent), stone masons laying down “segmented paving stones” (38 percent) and the members of 14 other fast-growing occupations.

The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology says its members are versatile scientists “specializing in human behavior in the workplace.” Employers hire them–either in-house or as consultants–because their expertise results in better hires, increased productivity, reduced turnover, and lower labor costs.

Says the BLS, “Industrial-organizational psychologists [I-O psychologists] apply psychology to the workplace by using psychological principles and research methods to solve problems and improve the quality of work life. They study issues such as workplace productivity, management or employee working styles and employee morale. They also work with management on matters such as policy planning, employee screening or training and organizational development.”

In short, you hire I-O psychs to improve the efficiency of your organization. Unlike many other kinds of consultants you might hire, they can show causality between their contribution and improved performance of your business.

Henry Kasper, the BLS supervisor who tracks this occupation, tells ABC News that it’s one of the smallest that BLS follows: There are maybe 1,600 such psychologists. Though their job growth is indeed forecast to be robust, total growth between now and 2022 is only 900 jobs.

Nonetheless, says Kasper, “Companies see they can get a lot of benefit from hiring them (I-O psychologists) on a contract basis. They come in and help improve productivity. The trend is up–and in a pretty significant way. Given it’s so small, you don’t need to add that many jobs to get a massive percentage increase.”

Tracy Kantrowitz, an I-O psychologist and director of R&D for consulting firm SHL, says she wasn’t surprised by BLS’s ranking her profession #1. “It’s consistent with what we’ve seen in recent years,” she tells ABC News. “Applications to grad schools are way up.” A masters degree in psychology or a doctorate are important–if not essential–prerequisites to getting hired, she says.

A number of other fast-growing occupations, as defined by BLS, require no degree and involve far bigger numbers of workers. Personal care aides and home health aides will be needed to care for the ever-swelling tide of aging Baby Boomers. Diagnostic medical sonographers will be in demand because the technology of sonography is advancing rapidly: it provides a way to look inside the body without subjecting it to radiation, as with X-rays.

Certain building trades jobs will advance as that industry recovers, and because these jobs enjoy special advantages within the trade. Segmental pavers will be in demand, says BLS’s Kasper, because prefabricated, interlocking paving stones present a cheaper alternative to concrete.

Herewith, the top 20 fastest-growing occupations between now and 2022, as defined by BLS:



Psychologists, 53 percent: $83,580

Personal care aides, 49 percent: $19,910

Home health aides, 48 percent: $20, 820

Insulation Workers,

Mechanical, 47 percent: $39,170

Interpreters &

Translators, 46 percent: $45,430

Diagnostic medical

sonographers, 46 percent: $65,860


blockmasons, stonemasons

and tile and marble

setters, 43 percent: $28,220

Occupational therapy

assistants, 43 percent: $53,240

Genetic Counselors, 41 percent: $56,800

Physical therapist

assistants, 41 percent: $52,160

Physical therapist

aides, 40 percent: $23,880

Skincare specialists, 40 percent: $28,640


assistants, 38 percent: $90,930

Segmental pavers, 38 percent: $33,720


electricians, 37 percent: $27,670


security analysts, 37 percent: 86,170


therapy aides, 36 percent: $26,850

Health specialties

teachers, post-

secondary, 36 percent: $81,140

Medical secretaries, 36 percent: $31,350

Physical therapist, 36 percent: $79,860

America’s 10 greatest factory tours

Who says America doesn’t make stuff anymore? From cars to coffee, hot sauce to jumbo jets, we’ve got ten great places to see how the proverbial sausage is made.

Ford Rouge Factory, Dearborn, MI

One of the most important sites in the history of the automobile, this city unto itself just ten minutes from downtown Detroit is where you’ll now find the F-150 pickup truck in production. Besides the chance to see the action on the factory floor below you, visitors are also given a crash course (through the magic of multimedia) in the history of the site, the Ford Motor Company and the industry at large. (Also check out the top of the building, the world’s largest green roof, at 10.4 acres.) All tours begin at the nearby Henry Ford museum complex, a destination unto itself.

Nearest airport: Detroit. Click here to see cheap flights.

Martin Guitar, Nazareth, PA

The choice of sensitive rockers everywhere was around long before rock ‘n’ roll was invented. Martin’s history of manufacturing some of the world’s greatest acoustic guitars begins back in the 1700s, when Christian Frederick Martin, Sr. left his German home at age 15 to apprentice with a Viennese guitar maker. Martin has been a presence in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley since 1833; one-hour tours of the plant are complimented by an on-site museum and a Pickin’ Parlor, where visitors are welcome to play high-end and limited edition models.

Nearest Airport: Allentown, PA. Click here to see cheap flights.

Intelligentsia Coffee, Chicago, IL

One of the most popular roasters in the country – now served in some of the most popular cafes and restaurants in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles – offers its fans (or just the merely curious) this easy-going and fun tour at their main roasting facility in the Windy City. You’ll learn the most correct, scientific methods for the perfect cup of coffee, find out how they go about finding the very best beans in countries you forgot existed, how to roast them correctly and – most importantly – you’ll get all the freshly-brewed coffee you can drink.

Nearest airport: Chicago. Click here for cheap flights.

Boeing, Everett, WA

Go inside the world’s largest building by volume – 472,000,000 cubic feet – for the chance to glimpse Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner in production, then head to the Future of Flight Aviation Center and get strapped into The Innovator, a seven-seat simulator that puts you in the cockpit for the ride of your life. Tip: The weak-stomached may want to sit this one out.

Nearest airport: Seattle. Click here for cheap flights.

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, Louisville, KY

You’ve seen them in the hands of countless baseball greats, here’s your chance to get right on the factory floor and see how the official bat of Major League Baseball is made. Each tour participant gets a mini-Slugger to take home as a souvenir; afterwards, stick around for the museum, a fun and informative look at the history of America’s best-known bat.

Harley-Davidson, Menomonee Falls, WI

It may not be the sexiest bit of the hog, but you can’t have a Harley without a proper powertrain, right? Visitors are welcomed in to observe operations at the 849,000 square-foot plant northwest of downtown Milwaukee, but that’s just one stop on the grand tour here in the hometown of the Harley. Make sure to pay a visit to the company’s fun and interactive downtown museum; also consider checking into the handsome, museum-adjacent Iron Horse Hotel, which has been the coolest place to stay in town ever since it opened a few years back.

Dogfish Head, Milton, DE

What was once a small Delaware brewery has grown to become one of the best on the East Coast. At heart, though, Dogfish Head is still the fun-loving little guy it was when it started out, so tours are casual and cool, samples are (but of course) offered. Make sure to check out the curious, on-premises Steampunk Treehouse, rescued from a recent Burning Man festival; this rather curious piece of functional sculpture is where the brewers are said to do their most creative thinking. If you didn’t get enough to drink on the tour, check out their popular brewpub and restaurant in nearby Rehoboth Beach.

Tabasco Factory, Avery Island, LA

That familiar smell fills the air as you drive on to 2,200-acre Avery Island; there’s no mistaking that you’ve arrived in the home of America’s favorite hot sauce. (Tip: A visit is highly recommended for those with blocked sinuses.) But a tour through Tabasco’s factory operation is just part of the experience here; the company-owned Jungle Gardens and Bird City – a beautiful, company-owned botanical garden and bird sanctuary, respectively – make a visit to the island a fun day out from either New Orleans or Cajun Country.

Mack Trucks, Macungie, PA

Are you an admirer of the mighty Mack? Put on your comfortable shoes and embark on a 1.5 mile walking tour of the famed truck’s mighty manufacturing plant.(At this location, you’ll see mostly construction vehicles being produced). Visitors to the site are also invited to visit the Mack Museum, featuring a wide range of vintage vehicles dating from the early 1900s up to 1979.

Airstream Factory, Jackson Center, OH

A tiny town set amid the central Ohio farmfields is the setting for the factory that produces those iconic silver travel trailers. It’s a pilgrimage site for owners, who bring their houses on wheels here to be serviced, camping out at the on-site RV park. Whether you’re curious about joining this elite group of nomads or not, the free, daily factory tour is good fun, even if just to see one of the country’s most stubbornly unchanged companies in action.

George Hobica is a syndicated travel journalist and founder of the low-airfare listing site

George Hobica is a syndicated travel journalist and founder of the low-airfare listing site

This year at Davos: How “Industry 4.0” affects you

More than 2,500 attendees from around the globe — including world leaders, business executives, heads of NGOs, academics and cultural icons — will gather in the Congress Center in Davos, Switzerland, for the 46th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum. The four-day event will kick off on Wednesday, Jan. 20, and finish on Saturday, Jan. 23.

The world is changing rapidly thanks to the technology revolution and that’s having an enormous impact on our lives at work and at home. The engineer and economist Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, said the scale, scope and complexity of this transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced. That is why this year’s theme in Davos is “Mastering the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

Central to the Fourth Industrial Revolution — also known as “Industry 4.0” — is how the speed and breadth of data being transferred around the world forces us to rethink and reimagine every aspect of our lives. We live in a lighting-fast-paced and interconnected environment where changes to technology, politics, demographics and economics can generate global shockwaves in an instant.

“The challenges are as daunting as the opportunities are compelling,” Schwab said of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. “We must have a comprehensive and globally shared understanding of how technology is changing our lives and that of future generations, transforming the economic, social, ecological and cultural contexts in which we live. This is critical, in order to shape our collective future to reflect our common objectives and values.”

Key issues in the 2016 World Economic Forum gathering will include:

How the Fourth Industrial Revolution will transform the healthcare sector, financial services, mobile communications, education and many other industries.How mankind can leverage technology in ways to promote growth for the poor as well as the rich.How breakthroughs in science and technology help solve international public health crises and complex global issues like climate change.How public- and private-sector leaders can better prepare their communities and constituencies for our rapidly changing global security and geopolitical landscape. What does the latest global security picture truly look like in 2016 and beyond? And how can new technologies keep people safe from cyber attacks?How government’s role in this complex, fast-moving world should be redefined to promote transparency in economic, social and environmental reform.

Schwab founded the World Economic Forum in 1971 as the European Management Forum. In the beginning, the mission was to focus on how European companies could adopt some of the management practices found in the United States. The meeting evolved over the years and Schwab’s vision now is to create an environment where global leaders can work together to resolve international conflicts.

Davos has become the place where leaders from many walks of life can share insights and figure out how best to navigate the future. The mission is simple: to improve the state of the world. But of course solving some of these complex issues may seem like mission impossible.

WEF’s co-chairs this year include Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors; Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft; Tidjane Thiam, CEO of Credit Suisse, and Hiroaki Nakanishi, chairman and CEO of Hitachi. The acclaimed cellist Yo Yo Ma will be performing the night before the meeting’s official start to welcome participants to Davos, the home for many during that week in January.

CBS News will be reporting live from Davos the entire week.

© 2016 CBS Interactive Inc.. All Rights Reserved.

Robot grocery store gives high-tech upgrade to food shopping

No more long lines at the grocery store – the future of food shopping is getting a high-tech upgrade.

Des Moines, Iowa is planning to build a first-of-a kind robotic grocery store as an experiment to offer food and necessities to locals anytime at their convenience.   

A partnership between the nonprofit Eat Greater Des Moines and the business equipment firm Oasis24seven will see an automated, vending machine-style unit come to the area.

“Throughout Des Moines, there are areas of town where access to quality food is limited,” said Aubrey Alvarez, the nonprofit’s executive director. “We would love for a full service grocery store to move into these areas, but until that time the robotic unit will address the gap in the community.”

She added this “project takes a simple and familiar idea, a vending machine, and turns it on its head. Robotic Retail will be accessible to everyone.”

Oasis24seven CEO David Maurer said the robotic system “works on a conveyor belt system, with an extractor that retrieves the product from the racks and places it on the conveyor for delivery to the customer.”  This allows for more fragile items like bread and eggs to avoid being damaged.

Similar stores are gear driven with a drop down delivery, he pointed out, which limits the products it can offer.

The stores are roughly 260-square-foot and are equipped with a sizeable front window so users can view the available products. “Our stores can be anywhere from 200 to 800 items, it’s fully refrigerated, the product can be anywhere from one ounce to ten pounds,” said Maurer.

Customers can pick and choose their items via a touchscreen ordering system that lists all the available products.

As for price, Alvarez explains that, as a nonprofit, “our goal is to keep the prices in line with a grocery store. We are sourcing as many items as possible through a local non-profit partner who supplies food to 12 food pantries. This will help us keep prices as low as possible.”

Don’t worry about getting expired food. “Anything on those racks that is out-of-date will automatically be taken off the shelf,” he said.

After going through preliminary planning stages, Alvarez hopes they can start construction in late July and have the store up and running soon after.

Beyond this current project, Maurer sees potential expansion for this type of concept. “Whether it is an apartment complex, parking [facility], military base … you could go down the list of the potential business channels for these automated robotic convenience stores.”

Chris Snyder is a producer for based in New York. Follow him on twitter: @ChrisSnyderFox.

VERSABALL® Robot Gripper Challenges Beer Pong Champions at CES 2015

LAS VEGAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Attendees at International

CES in Las Vegas, January 6-9, will encounter a new industrial

robotic gripper archetype as Empire Robotics demonstrates the precision,

gentle touch, and safe human interaction of its VERSABALL gripper by

competing with any attendee up for the challenge at a game of beer pong,

culminating in a competition between professional beer pong players and

robot on the opening day. All of this takes place in the Empire

Robotics’ booth #75183 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center.

On January 6th at 3 PM PST Empire Robotics in conjunction


the leading organization for professional beer pong and organizers of

The World Series of Beer Pong, will hold a beer pong competition between

VERSABALL and the newly crowned winners of BPONG’s The

World Series of Beer Pong. The two groups will face off in a man

versus machine showdown.

Aside from the special event, the new end-of-arm tool will grip and

propel ping pong balls as seen in this

demo video in an open challenge to all CES attendees.

The game demonstrates the VERSABALL’s ability to handle delicate objects

and produce precise grip and release performance to consistently shoot

the ping pong ball seven feet into a small plastic cup. This performance

results from years of research and development in jamming technology,

the foundation for all of Empire Robotics’ products.

The demonstration illustrates how the VERSABALL attached to a UR robot

arm offers an optimal choice for safe, collaborative robot applications

with humans working in close proximity to robots on robust

manufacturing tasks. Many manufacturers are choosing a VERSABALL enabled

collaborative system to eliminate pinch points in the setup, thereby

increasing safety and decreasing cost.

VERSABALL Solves Automation Challenges


manufacturers have spent a great deal of engineering resources designing

specialized and varied grippers for industrial production. To meet the

demands of agile manufacturing — typically with a low-volume, high-mix

series of tasks — automating production involves frequent reprogramming

and retooling. For many companies, the final solution often combines

expensive mechanical, vacuum, and magnetic grippers into a complex

end-of-arm tool that is highly specific to the application and not

easily adaptable or reusable.

In contrast to traditional, fixed tooling, Empire Robotics VERSABALL

delivers an out-of-the-box, multitask solution that easily adapts to a

variety of tasks. In a matter of minutes, with a fraction of the

engineering time and effort, VERSABALL can be programmed or reprogrammed

to pick and place parts that vary — like ceramics — and consistent parts

with varied orientations such as objects that fall randomly on a


Industry Testing Leads to Commercial Availability


commercial availability of the VERSABALL gripper follows extensive

industry testing of the Empire Robotics’ research kit available since

January 2014. The research kits include small- and large-sized heads,

along with the necessary pneumatic base and accessories to properly

operate the gripper.

Testing garnered significant interest from companies such as Callaghan

Innovation in New Zealand, who is interested in the VERSABALL because of

its ability to grip naturally varying objects.

“The VERSABALL adds value by gripping objects where rough surfaces would

cause problems for suction cups,” said Phil Stucki, R&D Engineer with

Callaghan Innovation. “Overall, we found VERSABALL quite easy to

install, and it worked well for many applications.”


The VERSABALL is a squishy balloon

membrane full of loose sub-millimeter particles. The soft ball gripper

easily conforms around a wide range of target object shapes and sizes. Using

a process known as “granular jamming”,

air is quickly sucked out of the ball, which vacuum-packs the particles

and hardens the gripper around the object to hold and lift it. The

object releases when the ball is re-inflated. VERSABALL comes in

multiple head shapes and sizes that use the same pneumatic base.

About Empire Robotics


Robotics was founded in 2012 by CTO John Amend and President Bill Culley

and is headquartered in Boston, MA. The company is a Cornell University

technology spinout with a talented team of PhD researchers and engineers

who are experts in soft robotics and the phase transitions of granular

materials. Empire Robotics extends robot gripping into off-the-shelf,

end-of-arm tools, a historically highly customized and complex field. In

contrast, VERSABALL is an easy-to-program, versatile, turnkey gripper

that enables agile manufacturing processes for small and large companies.

Adidas aims to open automated shoe factory in Germany in 2016 | Reuters

MUNICH, Germany German sporting goods maker Adidas aims to open its first fully automated shoe factory in Germany next year, part of an effort to bring manufacturing back closer to its consumers in more affluent countries.

The sporting goods maker signed an agreement to obtain technology from German engineering group Manz that will allow it to design and make custom-tailored shoe components in a new type of automated plant it calls “Speedfactory”, Manz said on Tuesday.

Adidas has been working with the German government, academics and robotics firms on new technologies it hopes will trigger a significant a shift in the footwear industry as the move led by its arch rival Nike to produce in Asia decades ago.

Adidas wants to speed up delivery times to fashion-conscious customers and reduce freight costs.

The project fits with a broader drive by Adidas to catch up with Nike, which has extended its lead as the world’s biggest sportswear firm in recent years with innovative products such as its “Flyknit” shoes made out of machine-knitted fiber.

Key to moving footwear manufacturing closer to Western markets are technologies that cut the need for workers to piece together shoes.

As part of that initiative, Adidas unveiled a 3-D printed running shoe sole this month that can be tailored to a person’s foot.

Adidas will open its first “Speedfactory” in the southern German town of Ansbach near its Herzogenaurach headquarters in 2016, a spokesman for Adidas said.

Adidas’s other partners in the project are Johnson Controls, robotic assembly expert KSL Keilmann, the Technical University of Munich’s fortiss institute as well as the University of Aachen’s ITA RWTH textile technology institute.

(Reporting by Joern Poltz; Additional reporting by Anneli Palmen; Writing by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Keith Weir)

Industrial Convergence: 5G, Industrial IoT, Smart Infrastructure, Big Data, IoT Data Management & Analytics (2016-2021) – Report Package – Research and Markets

DUBLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Research and Markets has announced the addition of the “Industrial

Convergence: 5G, Industrial IoT, Smart Infrastructure, Big Data, IoT

Data Management and Analytics 2016 – 2021 – Report Package”

report to their offering.

Convergent technologies in the areas of 5G, Industrial IoT, Smart

Infrastructure, Unstructured (Big) Data, IoT Data and Analytics are

poised to transform everything from manufacturing to enterprise

automation. The benefits to business and society as a whole are manifold

including greater efficiencies, new and improved products and services,

and greater flexibility such as products as a service.

Leveraging process automation and industrial data will provide analytics

and intelligence, which will be manifest at the retail level as smart

products and services that transform lifestyles, and deeply within

business supply chains as product life cycle management is transformed

by way of evolving IoT and Industry 4.0 technologies, processes, and


This research provides the most comprehensive evaluation available of

the technologies, current market, and future prospects for 5G,

Industrial IoT, Smart Infrastructure, Big Data, IoT Data Management and

Analytics. It includes an assessment of challenges and opportunities,

key players and solutions, and market forecasts for the period 2016 to


Report Benefits:

Forecasts for all convergent areas 2016 to 2021.

Identify leading companies and solutions in each area.

Learn how technologies interact and depend upon one another.

Identity market challenges and opportunities for apps and services.

Understand how efficiency improvements and enhancements impact


Key Topics Covered:

1 Introduction

2 Executive Summary

3 Overview

4 Sensor Technology and Developments

5 Sensors and Intelligent Endpoint Outlook and Forecasts

6 Future of Sensors in IoT

7 Companies and Solutions

365 Agile Limited (365 Agile Group Plc)

Ambiq Micro

B+B SmartWorx

Bosch Connected Devices and Solutions GmbH (BCDS)

Digi International

Fairchild Semiconductors International

LeddarTech Inc.

Nanjing IoT Sensor Technology Co., Ltd.

NYCE Sensors Inc.

Open Sensors Ltd.

Sensata Technologies

Seraphim Sense Ltd.

Silicon Laboratories, Inc.

Texas Instruments Inc.


Wovyn LLC.

For more information about this report visit

The Robots are Coming! Will the American Economy Produce Enough Jobs?

by Philip Kotler

Look at the picture below. What do you see?

A manufacturing process, with no workers in sight.

We humans have been replaced by robotic arms and artificial intelligence.

Think of an Amazon distribution center. Most of the ordered books and goods are picked up by robotic arms and assembled near a packaging station. A particular order may include two different books, a dress shirt, and a Bosch radio. All of these will be found and assembled and brought to one point without involving a human being. The human being is needed now to efficiently pack the items in a box. Soon some robotic company will build a robot that can figure out how to do this task, too.

Many blue collar jobs in factories and distribution centers already have been lost to automation. The displaced workers will hopefully find jobs elsewhere in not-yet-invaded businesses such as much of retailing. But they won’t get the pay at McDonald’s that they earned when they worked in factories and large distribution centers. They enjoyed a middle class lifestyle in the past. Now they will shift down to the working class lifestyle and pay. (Martin Ford, Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future, New York City, Basic Books, 2015. Also read his earlier book, The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future, Acculent Publishing, 2000.)

This development is scary enough to drive our employees to pick up axes and destroy the robots. Known as the Luddite backlash, it happened in the U.K. two centuries ago, but it didn’t get far. It is not likely to get far now because the whole legal system is designed to protect the rights of private property owners.

The counterargument is that automation creates jobs as well as destroys them. Someone had to design the robots, produce them, market them, install them, and run them. What is hard to answer is whether more jobs are being created than are being destroyed. Our economy needs to create about a million jobs a year just to keep up with growth in the size of the workforce.

In past episodes of major industry declines – such as when mechanization killed many agriculture jobs – many new industries and jobs came into being. The advent of the automobile industry killed the horse-and-buggy industry but brought in many new workplaces and jobs: parts manufacturing, auto parts stores, gas stations, auto mechanic shops, car assembly factories, among them.

As productivity increased, so did living standards. But since the 1970s, the link between productivity increases and rising living standards may have been severed. The digital revolution has created many new jobs but they don’t tend to be labor intensive. Facebook can run its global multi-billion dollar company with relatively few employees.

And automation is spreading beyond factories and distribution centers. While automation reduced the amount of physical labor needed, there was much mental labor still needed. But artificial intelligence is all about replacing “white collar” mental labor and “knowledge workers.” Artificial intelligence has already replaced many human jobs in music, advertising, journalism, teaching, research and more. Paralegals are being replaced by search engines. Soon doctors will have fewer patients as artificial intelligence helps people figure out what they should take for their common cold or other ailments. Once we make electric driverless trucks to transport our goods, where will the drivers go?

It raises another question. Which industries and jobs will be most vulnerable to automation and artificial intelligence? And which industries and jobs will be the least vulnerable. In the latter category, we expect jobs in retailing, health care, education, construction, plumbing, and automobile and machine repair to be less vulnerable than jobs in other categories. But even in retailing, will robots and other forms of machine automation someday threaten these jobs?

Will there be a tipping point where automation and artificial intelligence make human jobs no longer necessary to produce the fruits of a sophisticated economy? It raises the question of how unemployed people are to earn an income without finding a job.

It raises yet another question: How are young people to know what career to pursue when they won’t know if their hard earned skill set will be replaced by a robot or artificial intelligence? Will a college education be a good bet on the chances to get and keep a real job?

The assault on human jobs in America comes from many other sources as well. Consider how many American companies have moved their production overseas. Foreign labor is cheaper and there is no law preventing an American company from moving its production abroad and outsourcing. Nor is it likely that our Congress will pass any law stopping the free movement of global capital. Property owners have their rights.

At one time many workers belonged to unions. The unions would protect their rights. The union would negotiate with the company to find a resolution that would keep jobs here and let the company earn a decent return. But the workers today have no champion to defend their interests. The unions are dying.

Can’t We Expand the Amount of Work Needed in a Nation?

There is an implicit assumption that there is only a finite amount of work that markets deem worthy of paying to get done. If the supply of workers exceeds this finite amount of needed work, unemployment is the result. But the fact is that there is a great deal of work to do beyond what can be paid for. Look around and you will see dirty streets, broken sidewalks, homes needing repairs, infrastructure needing repairs or replacement, fields needing plantings, and so on. The amount of work needed is infinite, not finite. We just need to find ways to deem more work that is worth paying for.

Ultimately, we could go back to building pyramids. This created a lot of jobs. But we favor meaningful work, not make-do work. The building of magnificent churches and royal palaces was not only to feed the egos of the rich but to provide enough employment for the poor so that they wouldn’t revolt.

The initial response to growing unemployment might be to “share the work.” Instead of a 40 hour week, everyone works for 35 hours a week. Instead of a two week vacation, workers now take a four week vacation. The same amount of work will get done but it will involve more people having some work to do. Much of the burden will initially fall on businesses when they cut the work week to 35 hours/week and provide more vacation. But this adjustment can only go so far.

Another adjustments will be for many unemployed but skilled American workers to move to less developed countries where their skills are badly needed. These countries presently don’t have the means to automate their processes as quickly as this occurs in the West. American out-migration would reduce the financial burden of making guaranteed cash payments to those who remain here as unemployed.

What Would a Society be Like Under Full Automation?

Imagine reaching a point where all our goods and many of our services are supplied by machines. In 1928, the eminent British economist John Maynard Keynes speculated about such a future. He saw a time when “the discovery of means of economizing the use of labor outrunning the pace at which we can find new uses for labor.”

He predicted that by 2028 – one hundred years later – the “standard of life” in Europe and the U.S. would be so improved that no one would need to worry about making money. It would be an “age of abundance.” (John Maynard Keynes, “Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren,” delivered as a lecture in a Boys School in Hampshire in the winter of 1928.)

If we reach a point where there are more workers than work, the jobless workers will need some means of support. The answer is straightforward: cash payments must be made to the unemployed. If the unemployed are not supported, retail purchases will decline steeply and many factories will have to close down, further jobs will be cut, and investment will be curtailed. There is no alternative than transfer payments where the government works out a schedule of guaranteed cash payments to cover the basics of food, clothing, shelter, medical treatment, transportation, and education. The cash payments will have to come from raising taxes on those who still have jobs, and charging higher taxes to those who have higher earnings and wealth.

This solves the economic problem but not the social problem. What are unemployed workers to do with their free time? What do fulfilling lives look like when they no longer center on work? Work was not a pleasant thing for many workers but it beat the alternatives for many people. It also defined the narrative for one’s life: he is a salesman, she is a teacher. John Maynard Keynes anticipated this question of the impact of a highly developed society where automation does all the work. “For the first time since his creation man will be faced with his real, his permanent problem–how to use his freedom from pressing economic cares, how to occupy the leisure, which science and compound interest will have won for him, to live wisely and agreeably and well.”

Keynes hoped that the freedom from work would have a better result than the idle rich and their wives exhibit who are not able to find much of value to do.

One hopes that the 2008 animated film WALL-E negative vision of an automated economy where most people exist only to consume and be marketed to, and they have become so obese that they can hardly move under their own power.

In this new society, we hope that it is more likely that people will be defined by their avocation: he is a boy scout volunteer, she is a fundraiser for medical causes. Many people have passions they want to pursue: gardening, painting, writing poems, playing sports, spiritual activities, or lifelong learning. Others will want to help by doing volunteer work in hospitals, caring for children or persons with special needs or being docents at museums. There will be less focus on the consumption of material goods and services and more focus on collaborative work and self-actualization. Yet some people will be bored, turn to drink, get into fights, or turn to crime. The hope is to run continuous education courses so that people might find new interests that give meaning to their lives.

Looking Forward

The reality of a society in which a small portion of the population produces all the products that we need will likely materialize. Unfortunately, there is little discussion of this “new society” in public forums or private discussions. It is easier to deny the vision that human labor, like horse labor, will become increasingly superfluous in the functioning of the global economy than to solve the problem. People will go on witnessing the march of automation and hope that they can be among the lucky ones who still have one of the few remaining jobs. Joblessness will be a time bomb and become the defining political and social challenge facing the nation in the coming decades.

What do you think? Join the debate. Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Philip Kotler is the S.C. Johnson & Son Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management in Chicago. His most recent work is “Confronting Capitalism: Real Solutions for a Troubled Economic System.” is dedicated to “saving Capitalism from itself.” Visit us at to join the debate. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

TPG Real Estate Acquires $2.5 Billion High-Yield Real Estate Loan Portfolio from Deutsche Bank

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–TPG Real Estate, the real estate platform of TPG, announced today that

it has acquired a majority stake in a $2.5 billion portfolio of

high-yield real estate loans from Deutsche Bank’s Special Situations

Group. Under the terms of the agreement, TPG Real Estate will acquire a

75 percent stake in the portfolio, with Deutsche Bank retaining a 25

percent stake. No additional terms were disclosed.

The portfolio is comprised of 57 performing first mortgage loans on

properties in gateway markets across the U.S., primarily in New York and

Los Angeles. The loans, with a weighted average life of less than three

years and an average loan size of approximately $40 million, are backed

by commercial real estate assets in transition that are not easily

financed by traditional lenders. The property types include apartment,

office, condominium, hotel and industrial assets.

As part of the transaction, a team of 11 origination and risk management

professionals from Deutsche Bank’s Special Situations Group has joined a

newly-created mortgage REIT, TPG Real Estate Finance Trust (“TRT”), that

will own the existing portfolio as well as originate new loans to

existing and new borrowers. TRT raised capital from a group of

institutional investors with total equity commitments in excess of $750

million that will allow for originations of new loans by the platform.

TRT and Deutsche Bank’s leading Commercial Real Estate group expect to

continue to work together on new business opportunities.

“We are very excited about this unique, proprietary opportunity to

acquire the existing portfolio, as well as to expand the business as we

grow the platform through new originations,” said Avi Banyasz, TPG

partner and co-head of TPG Real Estate. “We are very fortunate to have

the same strong Deutsche Bank team in place, which will provide

continuity for current borrowers and open the door to relationships with

the growing number of new borrowers in need of financing.”

“Our leading Commercial Real Estate franchise offers a highly

diversified product suite to our clients. We are always seeking ways to

enhance our platform to remain at the forefront of providing innovative

services and solutions. This new platform, which combines DB’s expertise

in high yield CRE debt and the strength of TPG’s global brand, will

improve this client experience,” said Elad Shraga, Head of Structured

Finance at Deutsche Bank.

About TPG Real Estate

TPG Real Estate, the real estate platform of TPG, has invested $2.9

billion of equity in North America and Europe since 2009. Some of TPG

Real Estate’s well-known investments include ST Residential, Taylor

Morrison Home Corporation (NYSE:TMHC), MWest Properties, Merin BV,

Parkway Properties, Inc. (NYSE:PKY), P3 Logistic Parks, Enlivant,

Evergreen Industrial Properties and LifeStorage. TPG Real Estate

leverages the deep sector and operating resources of TPG, a leading

global private investment firm founded in 1992 with $65 billion of

assets under management. TPG has extensive experience with global public

and private investments executed through leveraged buyouts,

recapitalizations, spinouts, growth investments, joint ventures and

restructurings. For more information visit

About Deutsche Bank

Deutsche Bank is a leading client-centric global universal bank serving

28 million clients worldwide. Deutsche Bank provides commercial and

investment banking, retail banking, transaction banking and asset and

wealth management products and services to corporations, governments,

institutional investors, small and medium-sized businesses, and private

individuals. Deutsche Bank is Germany’s leading bank, with a strong

position in Europe and a significant presence in the Americas and Asia


Robotics News & Articles – IEEE Spectrum

Robotics News & Articles – IEEE Spectrum


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