Robots are coming. Here's why that's a good thing.

Doomsday predictions about automation paint a bleak picture for future job opportunities.

Many positions in retail and manufacturing have already begun to disappear. And nearly half of U.S. workers' jobs are at risk of being taken over by technological innovations, according to a study from Oxford University.

But not everyone considers the future of human work obsolete, Vanessa Fuhrmans reports for the Wall Street Journal.

Technological innovations will create at least 21 new professions, according to a study by Cognizant Technology Solutions. In the next 15 years, the study authors predict that technological innovations will create up to 21 million jobs.

The study authors predict that titles like "genetic diversity officer" and "personal memory curator" will appear across the next decade. Other professionals like "data detectives" will help their employers turn mountains of data into business recommendations, explains Ben Pring, the report's lead author.

Many of the jobs that may emerge underscore the role humans will play in building, directing, and facilitating human and robot collaboration, says Pring, the director of Cognizant's Center for the Future of Work. For the less tech-savvy, positions like "walker-talkers" may require minimal technical expertise and more empathy to care for the aging population, he adds.

Forecasting the future workforce can be tricky, Fuhrmans writes. The type of job creation will depend on how businesses invest in their employees, says Michael Reich, an economics professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

While it's important to identify what jobs will be eliminated by automation, it's also valuable to consider the opportunities we'll gain, Pring says. Automation will reshape the nature of work, but work itself won't go away, he adds (Fuhrmans, Wall Street Journal, 11/16).

Also see: 7 Tweets that could reshape tomorrow’s workforce


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