The introduction of air taxis, also known as electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles, could revolutionise the way we travel. However, the development and deployment of this technology also raises important questions about its impact on the workforce and the labour market.
One of the potential impacts of air taxis is the creation of new jobs in the manufacture, maintenance and operation of these vehicles. eVTOL technology development requires a skilled workforce with expertise in areas such as aerospace engineering, electrical engineering and information technology. As the industry grows, a wide range of workers will be needed, from assembly line workers to pilots, engineers and maintenance technicians.
However, the nature of these jobs may differ from those in the traditional aviation industry. Air taxi pilots, for example, may place greater emphasis on automation and the use of artificial intelligence. This may lead to a change in the skills required for some jobs and may require retraining for some workers.
Another potential impact of air taxis is the displacement of jobs in traditional transport and logistics industries. As air taxis become a more viable transportation option, demand for traditional ground vehicles and services such as taxis and delivery vehicles may decrease. This could lead to job losses for drivers and other workers in these industries.
The development and introduction of air taxis could also change the way people work. For example, air taxis could allow workers in remote workplaces to live further away from their workplace and commute by air, leading to decentralisation of the workforce. In addition, air taxis could be used for on-demand delivery services, which could change the way goods are transported and transform the logistics industry.
It is important to note that the impact of air taxis on the workforce and labour market will depend on a number of factors, including the pace of technology diffusion, government regulation and the actions of companies operating in the industry. In addition, it is important to consider how the introduction of air taxis can be paired with other technologies, such as autonomous vehicles, to create a more comprehensive transportation system that can benefit both workers and consumers.
The development and deployment of air taxis could create new jobs and change the way people work, but also raises important questions about the potential displacement of jobs in traditional transport industries and the need for retraining and upskilling of workers. It is important that policymakers, industry leaders and workers closely monitor the impact of this technology and take steps to ensure that the benefits of air taxis are available to all.