The future impact of new technology is almost always beyond our imagination. However, cautious monitoring of the actual impact of developing technology is possible and is a vital task. Over the past decade, Japanese industry has served as the world's primary testing ground in robotics, both as user and manufacturer. Industrial robots have already had a substantial impact on the worksite, corporations, and society at large. In some areas, evaluation is possible. Focusing on industrial robots in the manufacturing field, this study reports the following issues and trends associated with the human implications of robotization in the worksite: attitudes of corporate personnel and labour unions towards technological change; impact of technological change on workers and the nature of work; impact of robotization on the traditional work group structure; positive and negative contributions of robots in industrial safety; robotization and employment. © 1985 Elsevier Science Publishers B.V.
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