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Power Talk: Automation affects jobs but it doesn't destroy them, says former BP chief

Updated : November 15, 2019 08:58 AM IST

Author and former chief executive officer of BP, Lord John Browne on Thursday said that automation affects jobs but it doesn't destroy jobs. In an interview with CNBC-TV18's Shereen Bhan, Lord Browne spoke about his new book Make, Think, Imagine.'

Browne said, "The book took three years. We spoke to about 150 people and 120 of which appeared in the book. To make all of this a bit more human and to invite people into different rooms around the world which they might otherwise not get into to see different views of all the things that I have discussed."

On the future of technology and innovation, he said, "History doesn't repeat itself but history does rhyme with the future. Engineering and technology helped without any doubt the development of the human being and of societies generally. If we look around today, we see a world which is healthier, people live longer, they are mode educated, the world is less violent and it is better connected. So, a lot of these things will still be in place as we go through a period of de-globalisation at the moment."

Speaking about automation he said, "Humans have skills that cannot yet be replicated by robots. Every automobile that you order, for some manufacturers it is a different car and so you have to assemble them differently. Manufacturing has come a long way since the beginning of standardised parts and mass production."
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