LIFFORD is among the Irish towns most at risk of losing jobs through automation, according to a new study.
The report, conducted by researchers at University College Cork, found that two out of every five jobs currently done manually could eventually be replaced by machines.
Using 2016 census data, researchers at University College Cork were able to identify what towns in Ireland will be most impacted.
Number eight on the list is Lifford.
According to the study, jobs most at risk of automation include office and secretarial positions, process plant operators, jobs in agriculture and customer service.
Jobs in teaching, health and social care and research and development are less likely to be affected. Key factors, according to report co-author Dr Frank Crowley, are education levels and the number of skilled jobs an area has.
“Not surprisingly we find a significantly large marginal value associated with the proportion of third level graduates in a town,” Dr Crowley wrote.
“Towns endowed with a more educated workforce are less susceptible to automation.
“It would be expected that places endowed with a greater proportion of educated workers are more likely to create and attract more highly skilled businesses and jobs that will be less exposed to automation.”
Most at risk of job losses due to automation is Edgeworthstown in Co Longford, followed by the Cavan town of Ballyjamesduff.
Towns such as Portmarnock in Dublin and Annacotty in Limerick are least likely to be affected.
Dr Frank Crowley said that with constant advances in technology the impact of automation is going to be felt far and wide and it demands a national policy that is not one-size-fits-all.
He said that predictions are that the developments will come to pass over the next two decades.
“It will take time though and it is not Armageddon,” added the professor.