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Work robots are helping decrease the pay gap between men and women.
A US study looked at 741 regions that use industrial robots to figure out the effects such developments in technology have had on the gender pay gap, and also the impact that robots have had on people making decisions about starting a family.
The research even reportedly discovered that there was also a ‘significant statistical decline in gender inequity in income’ as a result of robots being used.
According to the study, which was published in the Journal of Human Resources, the gender income gap was decreased by 4.2% and the workforce participation gender gap by 2.1%, with the addition of 1.9 robots per 1,000 workers, Metro reports.
However, in the US, in part-time and full time roles, women only tend to earn 84% of what men earn.
Basically, the gender pay gap is decreasing because the work robots are mostly taking men’s jobs.
Researchers also discovered that the robots impacted worker’s decisions around settling down and starting a family.
In relation to births had outside of marriage, there was an increase of 15%, compared to a decrease of 12% for babies born in wedlock.
Moreover, a higher use of robots caused marriage rates to reduce by 1%, and an increase in divorce by 9%. However, the likelihood of couples moving in together despite not being married increased by 10%.
Dr Osea Giuntella, assistant Economics professor from the University of Pittsburgh, said:
There has been an intense debate on the effects of robotics and automation on labour market outcomes, but we still know little about how these structural economic changes are reshaping key life-course choices.
Our study shows the exposure to robots’ competition affected the relative labour market opportunities of men and women.
Male income fell at a substantially higher rate than female income, decreasing the gender income gap. Moreover, robot exposure has increased female labour force participation significantly while leaving the labour force participation of men unchanged.
From the results of the study, Dr Giuntella deducted that the use of robots ‘affected men’s marriageability and women’s willingness to long-term commitments with a decline in marriages and marital fertility’.
He concluded that the ‘more recent wave of technological changes, particularly in the development of robotics and automation’ may not have a direct affect on the labour market, but ‘might disrupt’ fertility and family choices, by ‘changing employment opportunities for both men and women’.
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