Over a third of Phoenix-area jobs could be replaced by artificial intelligence

Apr 27, 2018, 1:29 PM

(AP Photo)...

(AP Photo)

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — Artificial intelligence might still sound like a term only used in science-fiction movies or novels, but it may be creeping closer to mass adoption than some people think.

According to a report by nonpartisan think tank New America, 35 percent of jobs in the Phoenix area were at risk to be taken over by artificial intelligence.

Almost 650,000 workers with low-skill jobs were the most at risk, while high-skilled jobs carried the least amount of risk.

Some jobs that have the highest instability included cashiers, retail salespeople and food service workers. 

Occupations with the lowest chance of replacement included medical assistants, registered nurses and software developers.

According to the report, high-risk occupations disproportionately affected women as they made up a greater portion of the high-risk jobs.

The wave of automation was already seen with construction jobs and fast food restaurants taking advantage of the option that was cheaper and didn’t risk human error.

Certain construction and fast-food jobs have already gone the way of automation.

Arizona has had firsthand experience with automation — companies have been in the state testing self-driving cars for a couple of years, including Waymo, Intel, Ford and GM.

Uber was testing on public roads until a fatal accident in March in Tempe.

Gov. Doug Ducey suspended the company’s autonomous testing after a March crash left one person dead in Tempe. But, reports said that the fatal crash may have been unavoidable even if a human had been driving.

There were no plans to bring the program back.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(U.S. Forest Service-Tonto National Forest Photo)...

State Route 87 closes due to brush fire northeast of metro Phoenix

Lanes going both directions along State Route 87 closed northeast of metro Phoenix on Sunday due to a brush fire, officials said. 

1 day ago


Brandon Gray

Crews work to contain wildfire near Biosphere 2 outside Tucson

Fire crews have contained a portion of the Biosphere Fire that was burning about a half mile Sunday morning from the Biosphere 2 facility near Oracle in Pinal County. 

1 day ago

(Facebook Photo/Tempe Police Department)...

Drive-by shooting leaves 1 man dead in Tempe

One man is dead after a drive-by shooting in Tempe early on Sunday morning near Broadmor Drive and Rural Road.

1 day ago

person holding phone...

Maricopa County launches alert tool to help residents combat title fraud

Maricopa County recently launched Maricopa Title Alert, a free service to help county residents stay informed of document recordings and protect them against title fraud.

1 day ago

The Valley is seeing more demand from data center developers that can't find space, land or power i...

Audrey Jensen/Phoenix Business Journal

Phoenix metro data center leasing on track to surpass 2022 levels

As more companies upgrade their technology, data center space has become limited across the country and has helped push Phoenix to the top tier of metro areas for new data center development in recent years.

1 day ago

(Facebook Photo/ProteinHouse)...

New health kitchen ProteinHouse owners seek to expand in Arizona

The Valley's three ProteinHouse locations are under new leadership that seeks to open more restaurants in the state.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles


OCD & Anxiety Treatment Center

5 mental health myths you didn’t know were made up

Helping individuals understand mental health diagnoses like obsessive compulsive spectrum disorder or generalized anxiety disorder isn’t always an easy undertaking. After all, our society tends to spread misconceptions about mental health like wildfire. This is why being mindful about how we talk about mental health is so important. We can either perpetuate misinformation about already […]


OCD & Anxiety Treatment Center

How to identify the symptoms of 3 common anxiety disorders

Living with an anxiety disorder can be debilitating and cause significant stress for those who suffer from the condition.

(Desert Institute for Spine Care in Arizona Photo)...

Desert Institute for Spine Care in Arizona

5 common causes for chronic neck pain

Neck pain can debilitate one’s daily routine, yet 80% of people experience it in their lives and 20%-50% deal with it annually.

Over a third of Phoenix-area jobs could be replaced by artificial intelligence