‘Crank it up, Mr. Cathey’: Training to be a vehicle mechanic in an era of automation

According to a recent study by the Brookings Institution, changes in transportation tied to autonomous vehicles, or AVs, will affect 9.5 million people in 329 occupations — or 1 in 20 workers across the country. That is millions more jobs than are generally counted in such analyses.

The tally of those to be affected accounts for expected types of workers such as bus and delivery drivers, but it also includes construction workers, logisticians, shipping clerks, vehicle designers and auto mechanics, all of whom will be “directly exposed to changes in their work due to AVs and other [digitization],” according to the study, which was written by Joseph Kane and Adie Tomer.

Though that will mean tumult and job losses in some transportation-related fields, other fields will experience gains, Tomer said in an interview. The net result over the next decade could be positive, he said, though uncertainties abound.