Skip to main content

Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Why trust us?

New AI tools could ‘easily’ lead to 4-day week, expert says

ChatGPT and similar generative artificial intelligence (AI) tools are only going to get better, with many experts envisaging a major shake-up for white-collar professions in the coming years.

The new wave of AI-powered chatbots that have been garnering so much attention in recent months can converse in an impressively human-like way and before long will be able to comfortably handle numerous tasks across a range of industries.

Speaking at a conference in Scotland this week, Nobel Prize-winning labor economist Christopher Pissarides suggested that rather than leading to mass layoffs as some fear, he believes the AI revolution could instead lead to a shorter working week.

“I’m very optimistic that we could increase productivity,” Pissarides said in comments reported by Bloomberg. “We could increase our well-being generally from work and we could take off more [time for] leisure. We could move to a four-day week easily.”

Pissarides, a professor at the London School of Economics and an expert in the effects of automation in the workplace, suggested AI tools could free human workers from mundane tasks.

“They could take away lots of boring things that we do at work … and then leave only the interesting stuff to human beings,” he said.

While a four-day week would be welcomed by many people currently toiling away for five days or more, there are still many uncertainties surrounding such a change. For example, would a shorter working week result in a pay cut for those working fewer hours? And while a four-day week may be offered, would those companies gradually reduce the size of their workforce as AI takes on an increasing number of tasks?

Pissarides’s remarks follow a report from Goldman Sachs that suggests as many as 300 million mostly white-collar jobs could be lost or affected in some way by the latest AI technology.

Goldman Sachs’ analysis said that although a large number of jobs are likely to be impacted by AI, many roles would be assisted by the technology rather than eliminated. In addition, it said the shift to AI would result in the creation of new jobs in technology, and lead to a boost in economic productivity as tasks will be carried out in a more efficient manner.

“Although the impact of AI on the labor market is likely to be significant, most jobs and industries are only partially exposed to automation and are thus more likely to be complemented rather than substituted by AI,” Goldman Sachs said.

The fact is, while we know big changes are on the way, it’s still too early to say to what degree the fast-changing technology will impact the workplace.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
GPTZero: how to use the ChatGPT detection tool
A MidJourney rendering of a student and his robot friend in front of a blackboard.

In terms of world-changing technologies, ChatGPT has truly made a massive impact on the way people think about writing and coding in the short time that it's been available. Being able to plug in a prompt and get out a stream of almost good enough text is a tempting proposition for many people who aren't confident in their writing skills or are looking to save time. However, this ability has come with a significant downside, particularly in education, where students are tempted to use ChatGPT for their own papers or exams. That prevents them from learning as much as they could, which has given teachers a whole new headache when it comes to detecting AI use.

Teachers and other users are now looking for ways to detect the use of ChatGPT in students' work, and many are turning to tools like GPTZero, a ChatGPT detection tool built by Princeton University student Edward Tian. The software is available to everyone, so if you want to try it out and see the chances that a particular piece of text was written using ChatGPT, here's how you can do that.
What is GPTZero?

Read more
Is ChatGPT safe? Here are the risks to consider before using it
A response from ChatGPT on an Android phone.

For those who have seen ChatGPT in action, you know just how amazing this generative AI tool can be. And if you haven’t seen ChatGPT do its thing, prepare to have your mind blown! 

There’s no doubting the power and performance of OpenAI’s famous chatbot, but is ChatGPT actually safe to use? While tech leaders the world over are concerned over the evolutionary development of AI, these global concerns don’t necessarily translate to an individual user experience. With that being said, let’s take a closer look at ChatGPT to help you hone in on your comfort level.
Privacy and financial leaks
In at least one instance, chat history between users was mixed up. On March 20, 2023, ChatGPT creator OpenAI discovered a problem, and ChatGPT was down for several hours. Around that time, a few ChatGPT users saw the conversation history of other people instead of their own. Possibly more concerning was the news that payment-related information from ChatGPT-Plus subscribers might have leaked as well.

Read more
Reddit seals $60M deal with Google to boost AI tools, report claims
The Reddit logo.

Google has struck a deal worth $60 million that will allow it to use Reddit content to train its generative-AI models, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing three people familiar with the matter.

The claim follows a Bloomberg report earlier in the week that said Reddit had inked such a deal, though at the time, the name of the other party remained unclear.

Read more