Today’s young people face the frustrating challenge of preparing for careers that may not even exist yet. Choosing a college major is hard enough without throwing in the distinct possibility that most of the jobs in your field will soon go by the wayside. Cathy N. Davidson, co-director of the annual MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competitions, claims 65% of kids will end up with jobs that have yet to be created.
Not only will we see new jobs in the future, but we’ll also see a lot of old jobs become obsolete. In a speech at The American Enterprise Institute, Bill Gates predicted that within just 20 years, many current jobs will be replaced by software automation. Gates emphasized the danger for low-skilled positions in particular, but added, “labor demand for lots of skill sets will be substantially lower.”
The idea of losing jobs to robots is an unsettling one, but not every profession will be affected. An article in The Economist looked at the probability of specific jobs sticking around in the future, even high-paying positions. Among the most likely to disappear or see significant job losses are telemarketers, accountants/auditors, retail salespersons, technical writers, real estate agents, and word processors.
So what will replace the high-paying jobs currently on life support?
A 2014 article published by FuturistSpeaker.com, listed 162 jobs of the future, highlighting possibilities including atmospheric water harvesters, fear containment managers, and drone traffic optimizers. CareerAddict cited three jobs likely to be born out of technological advancements: AI creator, crowdfunding specialist, and cryptocurrency banker.
Many jobs of the future are a result of the “collaborative economy,” according to Sparks & Honey CEO Terry Young. “Increasingly, we have platforms like online payment systems to transfer funds and social networks to enable collaboration, and so many of these jobs are about people coming together,” he said. Sparks & Honey, a New York-based advertising firm that monitors workplace trends, published a presentation listing 20 careers that will exist in the future.
AOL Jobs partnered with the agency to determine the high-paying positions we have to look forward to in the future. Without further ado, here are 10 jobs of the future that either don’t exist yet or will soon see great expansion, compiled by AOL Jobs and Sparks & Honey.