Schools should put a greater emphasis on teaching digital skills – as millions of jobs could be swept away by automation, says Lord Kenneth Baker.

He warned that many white collar and professional jobs will be under threat from artificial intelligence.

“Jobs are being lost in professions we used to regard as careers for life.”

Lord Baker has produced a report, the Digital Revolution, calling for the education system to respond to the way in which technological change will affect the future jobs market.

“The economy is changing at an unprecedented pace,” he said.

“Artificial intelligence, robots, 3D printing and driverless vehicles will impact on sectors as varied as the legal profession, transport and construction.”

Lord Baker, who heads the Edge charity, which promotes vocational education, says figures from the Bank of England show that automation could put 15 million jobs at risk.

But he warns that the provision of the necessary digital skills is “almost entirely absent from the core curriculum in mainstream schools”.

The report calls for a stronger emphasis on work-related technical skills, linked to the impact of digital technology.
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