We may be known as the lucky country, but many in Australia who are battling the loss of employment due to technological advancement no longer feel that way. But Australians can still be lucky, we just have to work harder to make our own luck.
The erosion of trust starts with poor human behaviour, but it’s amplified by misuse and misunderstanding of technology.
Australia is suffering a trust deficit thanks to failures, across the board, of its institutions.
One by one, we’ve seen the shine chipped off governments, businesses, the media, trade unions, churches, schools, universities and hospitals. Even sport, our beloved national retreat from reality, has lost its allure.
Parts of the life we value are losing their promise: our school students are not progressing at the same rate as students in other competitive nations; we say we love the bush but we don’t want to live there; we are more attracted to reality television than any of the cultural output of an innovative creative community; and our hopes for a comfortable retirement are tangled in debates about tax, imputation and regulation that keeps changing around us.
And our belief in the sanctity of hard work is being undermined by the declining prospects for work itself.
Because here’s the reality for Australia entering the third decade of its third century: technology is moving up the food chain of the workforce, not just replacing blue-collar work but moving in on the brain-based occupations we thought safe from disruption.
Accountants, lawyers, journalists, engineers, draftsmen - anyone who relies on precedents to process masses of data - are in the sights of artificial intelligence which can more accurately and cheaply do the jobs that have be