What types of jobs will be the most common in 100 years
Predicting the future is a tall order for anyone, let alone envisioning what types of jobs will be common in 100 years. Yet, taking a look at the current trends and critically examining human history might provide us with certain hints as to what could happen.
Human society is in the midst of an unprecedented technological boom, and it can be safe to assume that technology will only become more advanced and, at the same time, much more common.
On the other hand, certain professions have existed for millennia – they take different shapes and forms, but their purpose is the same. A guard’s job is to protect people and property; the tools they use change, but the underlying cause is the same.
Combining the assumption of continued technological advancement and an overview of jobs that have existed throughout history, we can make educated guesses as to what types of jobs will be common in 100 years.
Information security specialists
These positions are already in demand, but as technology progresses and the world becomes ever more digitized, people who have the skills to protect your personal information will become invaluable.
Currently, information security experts are mostly employed by government agencies, banks, and large corporations. We can presume that in 100 years information will no longer be stored in physical containers en masse, but in electronic form on many different servers instead.
Organizations will need to have dedicated teams of people that will deal with security and information protection. As has been shown in the recent past, setting up protections and updating them only after a breach has occurred is not a viable model. Professionals will need to adopt a proactive approach by actively seeking out potential breaches and monitoring the servers.
Personal information experts will become prevalent; much like regular security guards were once reserved for the wealthy, but are now a common occurrence in many stores and buildings.
Much of your information is already stored in electronic form – think of your credit cards, the pictures and messages you send, and even your social media. As time progresses it will become the norm to be constantly online and connected, and personal data security experts will be needed to keep your information secure.
Personal security cameras, baby monitors, and universal electronic key-cards will see more use, and it is logical that you would want those to be secure. It will no longer be a privilege to hire an information security monitor, but a necessity. A good firewall and an expert who maintains it will basically serve the purpose of a door. Living without a door would be quite strange, don’t you think?
Computer and information systems managers
The amount of data that is currently being stored on servers was unimaginable even twenty years ago. Think of the floppy disk – when it was first invented it was a significant technological breakthrough, but the amount of storage space it had was laughable, by today’s standards.
In the future, storage space and the data stored will exponentially increase. This data will somehow need to be managed, both to protect it and to keep the systems that use it functional.
Computer and information system managers will be needed to categorize the data and manage the systems using it. Laws and regulations on data storage will have to be put into practice. The people maintaining the systems will have to implement them.
Mass information storage creates clutter, requires energy, and hampers functionality. Data recycling standards will be set, and system managers will work on keeping the servers clean and functional.
Genetic researches and engineers
While still in the initial phases, the different branches of genetic science are rapidly evolving. We are witnesses to the large strides genetic testing has taken in the last decade. Heritage tests are cheap and commonly available for the regular consumer.
Medical researchers are working on advanced genetic testing that can help them diagnose the likelihood of diseases and susceptibility to illness, as early as in fetuses. With the advance of medical science, genetic engineering will help prevent diseases before they occur.
Because genetic modification is completely novel, the ethics of it are still being developed. Bioethics will need to take up the challenge of determining what kinds of modifications are appropriate, and which are not.
Initially, genetic engineering will be used for medical purposes, but as it becomes more common, it is easy to imagine that people would want to use it for personal reasons. Maybe you always dreamed of becoming a singer, but given that you are tone-deaf, it is nearly impossible?
The manipulation of genes could allow you to develop any characteristic you wish. The ethics of it are questionable, but it is inevitable that it will become prevalent, and genetic research and engineering will be services in high demand.
AI developers and maintainers
The world is headed towards automation. What form the automation will take remains to be seen, but more than likely many manual and service jobs currently done by humans will be performed by intelligent machines in the future.
Developing these systems and machines will still need to be done by humans, and the people who have those skills will be highly valued. For wider use, simply inventing these machines will not be enough – in order to perform the services they were built for, someone will need to maintain them, just like all the machines we currently use.
Think about it like this – if most jobs in the service sector are taken over by intelligent machines, the job of manager will be substituted by AI maintenance workers. Like managers currently, these people will be tasked with keeping the services running smoothly and have the responsibility of dealing with any issues that may arise.
It cannot be said that entertainment jobs existed through all of human history, but as soon as civilization advanced to the point where not everybody had to do jobs essential for survival, entertainers existed.
In the future, the automation of many everyday tasks will allow people to have more free time, and the desire for entertainment will increase. Even today, the diversity of jobs within the entertainment industry is astounding – even if we are talking just about the entertainers themselves and not the people who work in the background to make it all possible.
In your daily life, you have a huge amount of choice on what you want to be entertained by, just by going online. Musicians, actors, sportspeople, comedians, dancers, magicians and acrobats have existed for millennia, and the subdivisions within these jobs are only increasing.
Go online and you will find people playing on instruments you never thought existed, or sports that were previously played only locally, but are now available globally. Did you ever think that you would spend hours watching people play curling?
There is no indication that the number of entertainment jobs will lessen; quite the opposite, there is every indication that the numbers will only go up. Technological development allows traditional entertainment jobs to be available worldwide, while also enabling the development of new positions.
Take twitch.com as an example – millions of people are watching someone play a computer game for hours on end. This was unthinkable a decade ago, and those are mostly amateur gamers who provide pure entertainment value.
The professional electronic games industry is booming and large competitions already exist. Electronic sports, or esports, competitions attract tens of millions of viewers, with prize-polls ranging in the millions. Even traditional TV networks have started broadcasting esports on their channels.
Entertainment jobs may also become more personalized. Certain games that have existed since the 1970s, namely tabletop role-playing games, are still very popular, with only slight changes occurring since their beginning. They mostly involve a group of players and a game leader, a type of storyteller, who directs their imaginary world, while they are allowed free choice within it.
Most of these games are played by groups of enthusiasts for their own entertainment, but it is easy to imagine a professional being paid to direct the games. It is hard to guess what form future entertainment will take, but it is certain that jobs in the entertainment industry will be abundant.
Mental health professionals
Recently, there has been an increased focus on the mental health of people. Many developed countries are investing more resources into mental health research and treatment. It is generally becoming accepted that the medical profession needs to take a more holistic approach – taking care of the mind, as well as the body.
The current crisis and the social distancing measures implemented have shown the delicate state of human mental health – service providers regularly report being overwhelmed by the emerging need for their assistance.
As mental health issues continue being destigmatized, and more people start seeking psychiatric treatment as a regular occurrence, instead of only in times of crisis, the need for mental health professionals will skyrocket.
The current trends of social interaction point toward more distancing between people, mainly due to technological development. Even the basic task of going shopping for groceries provides you with human-to-human interaction, and direct interaction is necessary for your mental health.
Many tasks that provide you with human interactions can already be done over the internet, work-from-home is becoming prevalent, and communication is done via devices, instead of face-to-face.
As technology advances further, it can be presumed that direct human interaction will further decrease, and mental health professionals will be needed to fill in the gaps. Their jobs will be seen as common and essential services, instead of as a luxury.
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