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Aligning the digital economy with a reinvented social model

A “social” approach to analyzing the so-called “digitization of the economy” makes it possible to observe two distinct but linked developments, both of which will potentially have a significant impact on the future of work and employment. First, there is the impressive progress in artificial intelligence and robotization (the automation process and computerization of tasks), which now allows robots to perform non-routine manual and cognitive tasks. Second, there is the emergence of a new business model, that of digital platforms, made possible mainly by the generalization of networks, smartphones and tablets, and the development of mobile applications. The social issues related to this digitization of the economy are often only presented in terms of the risk of job destruction through automation. However, other issues also exist that concern the transformation of existing jobs and the displacement of work, notably through the phenomenon of online outsourcing.