Role of Managers in the Fourth Industrial Revolution: From the viewpoint of comparing Japan and the United States

Author Name TODA Akihito (Recruit Works Institute) / CHUMA Hiroyuki (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / HAYASHI Susumu (Kyoto University) / KUME Koichi (Toyo University)
Creation Date/NO. October 2017 17-J-062
Research Project Comparative Studies of the Social Impacts of Artificial Intelligence (AI):From the perspectives of economics, sociology, and natural science/engineering
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In this paper, by using questionnaire survey of Japan and the United States for subordinate managerial staff (sales staff) and grasping the possibility of substitution of personnel with new technology such as artificial intelligence (AI) from the viewpoint of individual consciousness, we examine the role of managers in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. We find that, compared with those in the United States, Japanese managers have more sales responsibilities. The knowledge in the workplace has become personalized in Japan, and it turns out that less time is spent on organization management and subordinate management. Also, when asked about the possibility that their work will be lost due to technological progress, more people in the United States consider that their work will be replaced by technology compared to those in Japan. In both countries, we find that those who believe that interpersonal communication is required for business see their roles as not being replaced by new technology. Even in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it is pointed out that interpersonal communication, including subordinate management, remains important as work that has to be performed by humans.