Since the beginning of May, the Opinion Monitor Artificial Intelligence [MeMo:AI] has been investigating the public’s attitude to AI issues every fortnight. How intensively do citizens deal with this technology? Where do they see areas of application, what are their fears? In the focus of the last survey: How does the population perceive the influence of artificial intelligence on the world of work?
In the medium term, citizens expect little change in their own working environment. Those who expect changes make a clear distinction between different aspects of working life: while good opportunities are seen for AI in terms of occupational safety, requirements for necessary skills and workload, most expect difficulties in maintaining social contacts, income development or co-determination at the workplace. “There are particularly great fears regarding the handling of data and the potential for surveillance in the workplace. However, only very few fear a job loss for themselves and people from their private environment or even mass unemployment,” says study director Prof. Dr. Frank Marcinkowski.
Most changes are expected in data security and competence requirements. However, only a small number of respondents are aware of the potential for change that AI offers – this is where, according to the researchers, trade unions and other employee representatives are called upon to raise awareness among their stakeholder group for the potential changes of AI beyond potential job losses. If, on the other hand, we take a closer look at the fears of the influences of a stronger penetration of the world of work by AI, it becomes apparent, analogous to the potential for change, that in most areas fears are present in the significantly smaller part of the respondents. Only a few are concerned about job security or an increased workload, but the situation is different when it comes to the danger of surveillance and the transparency of personal data. Here, 40 and 50 percent of the employed fear negative consequences.
The current analysis of the survey can be found in Factsheet No. 3: Artificial Intelligence in the World of Work.