Digital technologies are not only changing our communication habits and the patterns of our social interaction, they also create access to knowledge at any time and anywhere and speed up the time it takes to process that knowledge. They make production processes more efficient and are increasingly undermining existing power relationships. However, more than anything they are changing our world of work.
Therefore, digitalisation will play a significant role on today’s schoolchildren’s choice of career. A representative survey of parents on behalf of the Vodafone Institute for Society and Communication shows that parents are very aware of the challenges of digitalisation in terms of their children’s future, but eye the effects of the digital revolution with concern.
For example, some two thirds of parents are convinced that in future competent handling of computers and digital media will become even more important in the world of work and computers or machines will take over ever more tasks. However, they anticipate that the effects of increasing digitalisation on the job market will be more negative than positive: 40 percent of all parents are convinced that the growing importance of digital technologies will result in a loss of jobs. Only 13 percent are optimistic that it will create jobs.
Parents from more disadvantaged social strata are particularly pessimistic: 48 percent of these expect that jobs will be lost in the process of digitalisation. However, parents still do not subscribe to the idea of introducing programming as a “foreign language” at schools. Only 32 percent were of the opinion that programming skills should be part of the curriculum.