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Creating a Human-Friendly Workplace in an Age of Automation

October 17, 2019

In the 1936 satire Modern Times, Charlie Chaplin stars as a hapless factory worker tightening bolt after bolt after bolt of a large industrial machine until he is eventually pulled into—and run through—its gears.Bottom of Form

However silly, Chaplin’s film reflects a legitimate concern that Adam Waytz has about the changing relationship between people and technology. Namely, as technology becomes more ubiquitous in the workplace, and more jobs are directly impacted by automation, what happens to the humans? Do we become an afterthought? Or can workplaces—can work itself—adapt to become productive and humane?

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