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I think in time certain constructions will simply be molded into a structure. That might get rid of a few roles.
At moment progress of modernization in construction industry is at slow pace. I agree with Sante once it happen some of role may be obsolete.
Any role where cost & quality can be improved through automation will be at risk.
Advances in modular construction components, self-healing construction materials, 3D printing will all whittle away at the volume of manual labor required.
What we might see is the shift to automation for commodity construction, but there still will likely be a niche, high-priced market which will want the personal touch and uniqueness which comes with human beings doing the work.
An analogy lies in furniture - mass market is quite comfortable purchasing furniture made in factories mostly by machines, but discerning shoppers willing to pay a premium can still find artisans who will build individual pieces from scratch.
Manual labor is always the first at risk with automation. But at mid level, I think there is already a lot of changes with new technologies. Since automation is not only related to hardware, we can see new softwares have opened new possibilties to the design process, also surveying and on-site operations: from BIM to drones, and anything in-between. That changes to the way proffesionals of those areas work, but also to the ammount of staff required for those operations.
I think roles will change rather than disappear. This wil be done faster and with more data but there wl be a risk of data overload.
Sorry for writting this but I have a degree in AI and I making research from 1988 until know in the field. Not only academic work, I have applied it in the field. The big problem is the big missunderstanding about AI outside there. Unfortunatelly is a new buzzword. Forget what I can say and search for serious works on AI and you will find that what it happends (and what researches think will happen in the future) is what @Tim Podesta stated above.
Humans will operate the robots that will replace humans. The mind boggles.
I believe the roles involving low skill level and which are repetitive in nature will fade away as they are more likely to be automated. However, new opportunity in the field of development and implementation of automation, analytics, and robotics will be on the rise.
Pleased to know about your experience.
My idea behind posting this thread was to explore the opportunities, experts like you foresee. I agree with you on the misunderstanding about buzzing technologies and AI. However, I am excited about the possibilities in terms of productivity, simulation, foresight, and coordination it is bringing to the construction industry at present.
I always enjoy these theoretical questions regarding our Industry. However, I would like to suggest the Proponent examine the specific tasks and work packages involved in the successful completion of the Deliverable.
In my opinion, our administration of Projects has not progressed dramatically. Yes, we utilize computer technology and software packages to assist the EVM reporting and communications. Unfortunately, it is my observation that these are administered by highly untrained and inefficient staff members- even in the office the human elements are in play requiring increased management demands for the diligent PM.
Also, many studies agree (and this confirms what I already know) the efficiencies practiced in the field have not changed for 4 decades, despite progress in the IT world.
The actual Work Packages required to produce buildings has the same poor SPI, and is still produced by highly untrained and unskilled workforces.
Where does this leave us now? AI might assist us discover sooner that our field workers are still performing at their traditionally slow pace......
That is my opinion!
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