Saturday, May 05, 2007

Offshoring: 30 million US jobs?

Cringely claimed yesterday that IBM is going to cut 150,000 IT jobs (consulting mostly), moving the work offshore.

Today in WaPo ...
Free Trade's Great, but Offshoring Rattles Me -

...In some recent research, I estimated that 30 million to 40 million U.S. jobs are potentially offshorable. These include scientists, mathematicians and editors on the high end and telephone operators, clerks and typists on the low end. Obviously, not all of these jobs are going to India, China or elsewhere. But many will....

...In addition, we need to rethink our education system so that it turns out more people who are trained for the jobs that will remain in the United States and fewer for the jobs that will migrate overseas. We cannot, of course, foresee exactly which jobs will go and which will stay. But one good bet is that many electronic service jobs will move offshore, whereas personal service jobs will not. Here are a few examples. Tax accounting is easily offshorable; onsite auditing is not. Computer programming is offshorable; computer repair is not. Architects could be endangered, but builders aren't. Were it not for stiff regulations, radiology would be offshorable; but pediatrics and geriatrics aren't. Lawyers who write contracts can do so at a distance and deliver them electronically; litigators who argue cases in court cannot....
In fifteen years, will an American garbage man make more than an American accountant? I disagree about pedes not being offshorable btw; we could use nurses or aides to talk to the child and remote pediatricians to provide backup. Plumbing, carpentry, roofing ... Oh, wait, aren't many of those jobs done by illegal aliens?

I have to laugh when I see articles bemoaning the disinterest of American women in IT jobs.

So when will we get universal health care?

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