Millions of jobs are likely to be displaced by automation but we have
less to fear from robots than some might think, a report from the World
Economic Forum has suggested.
It said advances in computing would free up workers for new tasks.
But others have warned there is no guarantee lost jobs will be replaced.
The WEF, which runs the famous Davos networking event, said that robots and algorithms would "vastly improve" the productivity of existing jobs and lead to many new ones in the coming years.
As a result we would see more data analysts, software developers and social media specialists, as well as job roles based on "distinctively human traits" such as customer service workers and teachers.
However, the think tank said the gains would come amid "significant disruption" as some roles become "increasingly redundant".
It sees robots swiftly replacing positions in accounting firms, factories and post offices, as well as secretarial roles and cashier work.
Amid this "significant shift" workers would need to be retrained to update their skills, it said.
It also urged governments to prepare safety nets for workers whose jobs are lost.
"The scale of job loss [in the fourth industrial revolution] is likely to be at least as large as that of the first three industrial revolutions," he said.
The OECD instead put the US figure at about 10% and the UK's at 12% - although it did suggest many more workers would see their tasks changing significantly.