Categorizing concepts through binary thinking lies under the belly of the deeply rooted institutions within the field of computer science and technology. And unfortunately, the this-or-that distinction established by the binary code could easily be translated to us-or-them. This has translated to widespread discrimination across the STEM fields, but the gendered tropes underpinning the conversation around computing may be causing even the most forward-thinking minds to miss the forest for the trees.
Technology jobs and the economic prosperity they bring are being concentrated in fewer US cities, according to a new report from The Brookings Institution and the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.
The November 2019 employment report showed U.S. companies added way more jobs than expected during the month as mammoth gains in health care and social services -- as well as a bounce in manufacturing hiring -- ushered labor statistics higher. The government reported Friday that payrolls increased by 266,000, easily besting the 187,000 estimate economists polled by Dow Jones had forecast. The unemployment rate ticked back down to 3.5%, matching an earlier 2019 level that at the time was the lowest since 1969.
To fill the massive demand for cybersecurity talent, secondary and higher education should focus their attention on developing cybersecurity courses that are rooted in IT operations and applications. With 300,000 open cybersecurity positions in the United States and 4 million open cybersecurity positions globally, many technology experts are calling for a forward-thinking approach to the country’s workforce challenges.
Relatively few of the benefits of economic growth in the last decade have gone to less-educated workers. The median inflation-adjusted salary for a worker with a high-school degree who has not attended college increased by less than 1 percent from 2008 to 2017 (inching from $37,596 to $37,960). Moreover, non-college-degree workers earn just 56 percent as much as the median worker with at least a bachelor’s degree.
In a new study, sociologist Natasha Quadlin of The Ohio State University found that "the logics of major choice" may lead women to select different majors from men, despite having similar preferences. "Even when women place great emphasis on earnings, other preferences may ultimately win out for them," said Quadlin, assistant professor of sociology at Ohio State.
For students deciding between computer science and computer engineering, the former might result in a higher salary a year after college. New comprehensive data from the U.S. Education Department show the median salary for computer science majors at Northwestern was about $8,000 more than computer engineering majors.
Content knowledge skills are relatively easy to learn, standardize and assess. That means they’re also easy to automate. As AI and education expert Stuart Elliott has pointed out, computer literacy capabilities surpassed 30% of workers in developed countries in 2016. By 2026, this number will be 60%. As for numeracy skills, including math and data analysis, computers will outperform nearly 100% of workers.
Let’s start with the labor side. Currently, the supply of available labor is extremely limited. Indeed, the unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in 66 years. That is really saying something. But with so few people out of work, it keeps getting harder for firms to find suitable employees. Job gains, while still decent, have been trending downward, in no small part because the number of job openings exceeds the number of people unemployed: The workers are just not there.
Artificial intelligence (AI) has generated increasing interest in “future of work” discussions in recent years as the technology has achieved superhuman performance in a range of valuable tasks, ranging from manufacturing to radiology to legal contracts. With that said, though, it has been difficult to get a specific read on AI’s implications on the labor market.