Robohub.org
 

Video describes accelerating robot deployment in China

by
27 April 2015



share this:
nytimes-replace-jobs-video_800_419_80

In response to rising labor costs combined with a shortage of workers, China has begun to provide incentives to encourage businesses to utilize robots to replace factory workers.

In a video interview for The NY Times, Peng Zhang, Vice Director of the Economy, for Shunde (a city of 2.4 million) in Guandong Province, China, says that he is administering a project to replace humans with robots. Zhang said that the half of Shunde’s population comprised of immigrant workers from other Chinese provinces cannot continue to grow. He cited the following reasons for his actions:

  • China’s one-child rules halved the birthrate from 1987 to 2003, consequently China has a continually shrinking supply of workers in the 18-24 age range, the prime age for factory workers.
  • Labor shortage is further compounded because potential workers are staying in local schools and universities much longer and, according to the NY Times article, “following a Confucian tradition that the educated do not soil their hands with manual labor, graduates overwhelmingly refuse to accept factory work, except in supervisory, design or engineering positions.”
  • Electronics manufacturing is still moving factories to China because most of the parts suppliers are already there; consequently there is much demand for factory work.
  • Prospective migrant workers born in the ’80s and ’90s “are inferior to the older generations,” says Zhang in the video. “Their lack of endurance and hard-working spirits” make them less desirable.

Bottom line: As a response to the changing landscape of the labor market, i.e., to compensate for higher wages and harder to find and train labor, several cities and provinces have encouraged robotics be employed in the factories in their districts. Many of Guandong Province’s local authorities, such as those in Shunde, have announced that they are offering various incentive plans to  upgrade and adopt robotics into local manufacturers’ factories. Mr. Zhang says in the video that his goal is to reduce Shunde’s workforce by half by using robots and sending the low-skilled migrant workers replaced by the robots back to their home towns.



tags: , , ,


Frank Tobe is the owner and publisher of The Robot Report, and is also a panel member for Robohub's Robotics by Invitation series.
Frank Tobe is the owner and publisher of The Robot Report, and is also a panel member for Robohub's Robotics by Invitation series.





Related posts :



A draft open standard for an Ethical Black Box

Within the RoboTIPS project, we have developed and tested several model of Ethical Black Boxes, including one for an e-puck robot, and another for the MIRO robot.
19 May 2022, by

Unable to attend #ICRA2022 for accessibility issues? Or just curious to see robots?

There are many things that can make it difficult to attend an in person conference in the United States and so the ICRA Organizing Committee, the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society and OhmniLabs would like to help you attend ICRA virtually.
17 May 2022, by
ep.

350

podcast

Duckietown Competition Spotlight, with Dr Liam Paull

Dr. Liam Paull, cofounder of the Duckietown competition talks about the only robotics competition where Rubber Duckies are the passengers on an autonomous driving track.
17 May 2022, by

Designing societally beneficial Reinforcement Learning (RL) systems

In this post, we aim to illustrate the different modalities harms can take when augmented with the temporal axis of RL. To combat these novel societal risks, we also propose a new kind of documentation for dynamic Machine Learning systems which aims to assess and monitor these risks both before and after deployment.
15 May 2022, by

Innovative ‘smart socks’ could help millions living with dementia

‘Smart socks’ that track rising distress in the wearer could improve the wellbeing of millions of people with dementia, non-verbal autism and other conditions that affect communication.
13 May 2022, by

Swiss Robotics Day showcases innovations and collaborations between academia and industry

The 2021 Swiss Robotics Day marked the beginning of NCCR Robotics’s final year. The project, launched in 2010, is on track to meet all its scientific goals in the three areas of wearable, rescue and educational robotics, while continuing to focus on supporting spin-offs, advancing robotics education and improving equality of opportunities for all robotics researchers.
10 May 2022, by





©2021 - ROBOTS Association


 












©2021 - ROBOTS Association