A study led by the World Economic Forum (WEF) found that by taking care of household tasks, artificial intelligence (AI) can assist in reducing the gender gap, granting homemakers additional time to engage in work and leisure activities, reported FOX news.
The conclusion of the WEF is based on recent research indicating that the progress in automation and AI will enable robots to assume a considerable portion of household duties in the coming decade.
According to a group of AI specialists, who were consulted by the WEF, approximately 39% of the time spent on an average of 17 typical household tasks could be automated within a decade. These results were published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS One.
The recent study has the potential for a significant impact on women in society, as per the WEF's observation. The WEF highlighted that women continue to be responsible for the vast majority of domestic chores across Europe and various other regions globally.
"Working-age adults spend similar amounts of time on this unpaid domestic work as they do on paid work," read an article on the WEF's website. "But household chores are also disproportionately carried out by women. Therefore, automation of these tasks could lead to significant social and economic consequences. More time – particularly that of women – could be freed up for social, leisure and paid work."
"This is particularly relevant," the analysis continued, "given the World Economic Forum's Global Gender Gap Report 2022 shows that, at our current rate of progress, it will be another 132 years before there is parity between men and women."
In its 2022 report, the WEF analysed "gender parity" in four categories, which include economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment. The report concluded that Europe and North America were closest to achieving gender parity, with a projected timeline of six decades to reach it. In contrast, South Asia had the farthest distance to go, with an estimated 197 years until gender parity is achieved in the region.
The group of AI specialists who conducted the recent study found that household chores like cooking and cleaning are more feasible to automate than care tasks such as taking care of children or the elderly. The study revealed that grocery shopping is the most easily automatable task, with a potential automation rate of 59% in the next decade, while physical childcare is the least easily automatable task, with a potential automation rate of 21%.
Robotic vacuum cleaners and mops, which are service robots designed for domestic and household chores, have emerged as the top-selling robots worldwide.