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Tyler Cowen on Succeeding in Today's Job Market

George Mason University economics professor Tyler Cowen says this age of technology is creating new economic and social realities. In his most recent book—and in an IdeaFestival presentation this week in Louisville—Cowen explains why being “pretty good” at something does not necessarily guarantee a path to success in today’s world.

He spoke recently with WFPL’s Rick Howlett.

Interview with Tyler Cowen

On what he tells his students about succeeding in today’s job market:

“It depends on the student, of course, but I think one either needs very good technical skills or very good people skills. The people skills are important, because computers won’t be doing that anytime soon. So it’s not that we all have to become programmers or math whizzes. But you need to find out exactly what is it you’re good at and are you able to do in a way that where competition from either outsourcing or artificial intelligence isn’t going to displace you. Those are the new risks in 2014.

This is part of a series of interviews with IdeaFestival speakers.  Find more online here.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.