Robots Won't Replace Us Just Yet

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

In an article written for the MIT Sloan Management Review, "Working with Robots in a Post-Pandemic World," published on Wednesday, Erik Brynjolfsson, director of the Stanford Digital Economy Lab, and Matt Beane, assistant professor in technology management at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a digital fellow at the Digital Economy Lab, write that most companies which investment in automation on a grand scale are likely to see their efforts fail, while those that succeed will be atypical. And while those rare successes should be studied closely, they argue that it is incremental investments — plug-and-play technology models for settings like warehouses — that remain wiser today. It is a conclusion they have reached that does not change based on the size of a company's balance sheet, or as a result of the coronavirus. While the march of automation will not reverse, it has a long, long way to go: only 1.3% of firms have adopted robotics to date.

Read the CNBC interview with Matt Beane and Erik Brynjolfsson. 

Read the original MIT Sloan Review article on which the interview is based.

UCSB assistant professor Matt Beane.

UCSB assistant professor Matt Beane.