Automation, Labor Markets & Refugee Integration

Kate attended the 2017 World Bank and IMF Forum. She is studying a Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Melbourne. 


Technology has traditionally been viewed as a complement to human labour, yet this tool has begun to erode opportunities for human workers. Those expected to be hit particularly hard by automation are those in low-skill, blue-collar occupations. Due to labour market barriers, such as a lack of English communication skills, refugees have typically taken up those jobs most at risk of automation.

This policy paper will explore policy proposals that can help shape and alleviate the impact of automation, especially for vulnerable sub-sectors of our population, such as refugees.

It will look broadly at automation and its overall impact on labour markets, before focusing on the specific impacts it will have on refugee employment prospects and major barriers encountered by refugees during their integration. We will also discuss policies implemented by international jurisdictions and consider their feasibility for Australia. 

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