If you still think outsourcing, caused by globalization, is the biggest threat to the American labor market: think again. According to a new book by Colombia Business School professor Bruce Greenwald and historian Judd Kahn, aptly titled Globalization, technology, along with other miscellaneous productivity measures, are much more likely to result in job cuts than shipping jobs off to China and other developing countries. The authors cite statistics from the Commerce Department, showing that between 2000 and 2006 only 35% of lost jobs were replaced by foreign labor. Contrast that to the 65% that were lost to productivity increases.
Part of the reason is that spending is shifting to services, which is much harder to globalize. As technology enables easier transportation and manufacturing of goods, human attention becomes comparatively more valuable.