Women are More Likely To Be Replaced by AI

4 min readMay 18, 2024
Woman and artificial intelligence

The impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on employment varies by gender, and women face a higher risk of replacement. The digital divide exacerbates this gap and limits women’s access to AI-based opportunities. The lack of female representation in the field of AI can lead to biased technology. Overcoming these challenges requires inclusive AI development, increased digital literacy, and supportive policies.

Many workers worry that their jobs will be replaced by AI, a research shows that women are the ones most worried.
A recent report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) found that in developed countries like the United States, about 60% of jobs may be impacted by AI. Of those affected, the researchers estimate that half will be more productive thanks to AI, and for the other half, AI applications could perform key tasks currently performed by humans, reducing labor demand, lowering wages and reducing hiring. In the most extreme cases, some of these jobs may disappear.

According to the IMF, women are the ones most at risk of experiencing these adverse effects. The results may mean that women face greater risks and opportunities, the report said.
LinkedIn also recently discovered that women are more likely to be replaced by AI. An analysis of data from LinkedIn users worldwide shows that 56% of men, but only 46% of women, will have their jobs augmented by AI. While 43% of men’s jobs will be disrupted by AI, 57% of women will experience this.

When considering which jobs AI will replace, we can see that AI is changing the global job market. Data shows that AI is more likely to replace women’s jobs than men’s jobs.
An International Labor Organization report (ILO, 2023, PDF) states that AI could replace approximately 4% of the work performed by women worldwide. On the other hand, only 1% of male workers have a similar risk. In high-income countries, the gap is even more significant: 8% of women’s jobs face the threat of automation, while only 3% of men’s jobs face such risks.

This isn’t just about individual job losses; it’s about the wider economic impacts. If most women lose their jobs, the entire sector becomes unstable, affecting economic growth and innovation.
A report from UNESCO highlights that AI is also creating a need for new digital skills — yet most women around the world don’t even have access to the internet or essential digital skills.

Although women constitute almost half of the global population, there are 259 million fewer women who use the internet than men (ITU, 2022). This gap is most pronounced in low-income countries, with 21% of women accessing the internet compared to 32% of men, and this figure has not improved since 2019. There are many reasons for this, including cultural and social norms, access points which is unsafe to public ICT. facilities, or financial obstacles.

This digital divide has an impact on sectors experiencing rapid technological change, such as finance. As AI-based tools become mainstream, women in traditional roles will need to adapt.
However, they first need basic digital literacy and access before they can learn AI-based financial tools. Without addressing the root causes of internet access and basic digital skills, efforts to improve women’s skills in the AI era will be ineffective. The challenge is not only to introduce women to AI, but also to ensure women have the basic skills to engage with it.

What jobs for women will AI replace? It’s important to look at the roles women often hold in the world of work and how AI can change them. Data from the ILO report reveals that the impact of AI on gender stems from the large number of women holding administrative positions.
Many women throughout the world work in administrative roles such as bank tellers, secretaries, or accounting clerks. These positions, which have been growing in high-income countries over the past decade, are at high risk of being replaced by AI.

24% of clerical job assignments were highly exposed to AI automation risks, and another 58% of clerical job assignments had medium exposure. Taking both exposure levels into account, 82% of administrative work tasks are exposed to AI automation risks at above average levels (ILO, 2023). This is different from other occupational groups, where the highest share for high exposure tasks varies between 1% and 4%, and for medium exposure tasks does not exceed 25%. Even assuming a large margin of error, the results were surprising.

While AI’s impact on the job market is clear, its impact on gender disparities is a cause for concern.
As AI plays a more important role in society, it is important to pay attention to its impact on gender disparities. The facts clearly indicate that we must equip women with the necessary digital skills, and involve them in the development of AI technologies. Encouraging more women to work in the field of AI and increasing digital literacy is a good step. However, governments and communities must work together to ensure an AI-driven future is inclusive and equitable.
Thinking about what jobs AI will replace and what gender roles will be is critical. The goal is a world where AI empowers everyone, regardless of gender or sex.

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