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Can Automation Help Solve the Construction Workforce Shortage? That’s a Definite...Maybe

February 13th, 2020 | Published by NEW Construction Alliance

The Midwest Economic Policy Institute (MEPI) released a study that predicts that increasing automation in the construction industry could displace or replace as much as 49 percent of the US construction workforce.

From the study’s introduction:

“Advancements in technology have already dramatically reshaped American manufacturing and eliminated millions of blue-collar, middle-class jobs,” said study co-author and Project for Middle Class Renewal Director Dr. Robert Bruno. “Similar changes are already underway in the construction sector, and it is vital for policymakers to begin thinking about ways to embrace progress without leaving middle-class workers behind.”

The catch? The MEPI’s predications are predicated on a number of factors that have yet to be determined, such as pertinent policy changes, a public-private collaboration roadmap and a maze of other logistical matters.

Even then, MEPI is predicting it will take until 2057 before such automation could be in place on such a mass scale. While this may play an important role in the long-term solutions for our shortage, we still need effective options for the next 37 years.

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