The IMF thinks AI will be bad news for jobs, wages, and international equality

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AI may end up being a double-edged sword for many workers, according to new research from the IMF which says that while the technology will enhance productivity for many of us, it also threatens jobs and wages in advanced societies.

The IMF anticipates that AI is set to affect almost 40% of jobs worldwide in some capacity, and will have huge negative impacts on equality.

The most advanced societies will see the greatest benefits from leveraging AI tools, but it will potentially make less advanced societies even poorer.

AI will likely "worsen overall inequality”

For advanced economies, AI will have an impact on around 60% of jobs, with half those potentially being taken by AI which will negatively impact the number of jobs available and the compensation offered by companies.

In its analysis, IMF managing director Kristalina Georgieva says “In most scenarios, AI will likely worsen overall inequality, a troubling trend that policymakers must proactively address to prevent the technology from further stoking social tensions.”

Due to poorer nations not having the necessary infrastructure or workforces to harness AI, they will see less of an impact on hiring rates and wages, but will potentially suffer from not being able to harness the benefits provided by AI such as increased efficiency, productivity and revenue. This could result in a greater level of inequality between the richest and poorest nations.

“Guided by the insights from the AI Preparedness Index, advanced economies should prioritize AI innovation and integration while developing robust regulatory frameworks,” Georgieva continued. 

“This approach will cultivate a safe and responsible AI environment, helping maintain public trust.”

AI regulation has been a particular focus for many nations due to the rapid increase in popularity of AI tools such as ChatGPT, and their potential for malicious use. Last November, the UK hosted the AI Safety Summit at which the UK, EU, US and China signed the Bletchley Declaration. This declaration lays out guidelines for the safe development of AI.

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Benedict Collins
Staff Writer (Security)

Benedict Collins is a Staff Writer at TechRadar Pro covering privacy and security. Before settling into journalism he worked as a Livestream Production Manager, covering games in the National Ice Hockey League for 5 years and contributing heavily to the advancement of livestreaming within the league. Benedict is mainly focused on security issues such as phishing, malware, and cyber criminal activity, but he also likes to draw on his knowledge of geopolitics and international relations to understand the motives and consequences of state-sponsored cyber attacks.

He has a MA in Security, Intelligence and Diplomacy, alongside a BA in Politics with Journalism, both from the University of Buckingham. His masters dissertation, titled 'Arms sales as a foreign policy tool,' argues that the export of weapon systems has been an integral part of the diplomatic toolkit used by the US, Russia and China since 1945. Benedict has also written about NATO's role in the era of hybrid warfare, the influence of interest groups on US foreign policy, and how reputational insecurity can contribute to the misuse of intelligence.

Outside of work Ben follows many sports; most notably ice hockey and rugby. When not running or climbing, Ben can most often be found deep in the shrubbery of a pub garden.