Aug 8, 2023 - News

Report: Richmond risks losing 75,000 jobs to AI

Illustration of a uniform name patch with the letters "A.I." stitched

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Richmond could lose more than 75,000 jobs to artificial intelligence over the next four years, per a new analysis from research website

Driving the news: Roughly 12% of Richmond's workforce is at risk of AI-related job loss, according to the group, which used U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics employment data to analyze employment numbers within the 50 most-populated metro areas.

  • Potential job loss estimates were based on the percentage of at-risk jobs within each metro area, according to the group.

Why it matters: AI software and large language models — including ChatGPT — may soon be able to do all manner of jobs, raising concerns that a number of industries could replace workers with the technology.

  • Administrative roles like recordkeeping and cashiers, accounting, bookkeeping, factory and traditional security roles face the largest potential job losses due to AI, according to a recent report from the World Economic Forum.

By the numbers: Richmond ranked 34 out of the top 50 metro areas with the most at-risk jobs. Nearly 630,000 workers are employed in the area, and about 77,000 of those jobs are at risk.

  • Las Vegas, Miami, Louisville, Orlando and Grand Rapids claimed the top five spots with between 14.5% and 15.8% of their workforces threatened by AI.

Yes, but: AI will likely also create jobs, and Richmond is one of dozens of cities with the potential to become an AI adoption hub through federal funding, per a new Brookings Institution report.

  • The Richmond Technology Council, aka rvatech, is applying for a $50-$70 million federal grant that could help make that happen, the Times-Dispatch reports.
  • And the city has many of the attributes that make it a strong contender, like Fortune 500 companies and a concentration of data centers, rvatech told the RTD.

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