Technology is splitting the US workforce into two

Highly educated workers are reaping rewards while the lower skilled are stuck in dead-end jobs

A General Motors plant in the US. Automation is changing the nature of work, flushing workers without a college degree out of productive industries, like manufacturing and high-tech services, and into tasks with meagre wages and no prospect for advan
A General Motors plant in the US. Automation is changing the nature of work, flushing workers without a college degree out of productive industries, like manufacturing and high-tech services, and into tasks with meagre wages and no prospect for advancement. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG
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PHOENIX (Arizona) • It's hard to miss the dogged technological ambition pervading this sprawling desert metropolis in the US.

There's Intel's US$7 billion (S$9.5 billion), 7-nanometer chip plant going up in Chandler. In Scottsdale, Axon, the maker of the Taser, is hungrily snatching talent from Silicon Valley as it embraces automation to keep up with growing demand. Start-ups in fields as varied as autonomous drones and blockchain are flocking to the area, drawn in large part by light regulation and tax incentives. Arizona State University is furiously churning out engineers.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 10, 2019, with the headline Technology is splitting the US workforce into two. Subscribe