A SURVEY of more than 2,000 UK workers has discovered a clear North-South divide when it comes to attitudes and opinions on the rise of robot workers.

The research, conducted by Industrial Vision Systems (IVS), a supplier of machine vision solutions to industry, found that up to 30 per cent of workers in northern cities would feel threatened that a robot would take their job if they had one assisting them at work.

This figure fell to just 16 per cent of workers in some southern cities, including Brighton and Southampton.

Just 15 per cent of workers in Newcastle would be “grateful to have the extra help” should they be working with a robot.

Thirty per cent of workers surveyed across the North-East said they would be afraid that the robot would make a mistake compared to just 19 per cent in the South-East.

A recent study from The Centre for Cities think-tank analysed the likely impact of robot workers and discovered that the North and Midlands are likely to suffer more than wealthier cities in the Nouth.

It showed that 18 per cent of jobs are under threat in southern cities, compared with 23 per cent elsewhere in the country.

However, Earl Yardley, IVS director, said that the rise in robots in the workplace is to help organisations enhance their productivity by utilising them to assist human workers with inspection processes – not replace them.

He said: “This relieves the human worker from what you may call more commonplace work, which means they are then deployed to higher value tasks within the workplace.

“I personally believe that it is somewhat misguided to think that because a robot happens to be working in the same building as you, that it’s going to replace you. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

“Working with collaborative robots has the added advantage of working safely and efficiently in workspaces currently occupied by human workers.

“The misconception of working with vision enabled robots could hinder productivity levels in across these local economies. By offering ready-to-run inspection solutions utilising robots and vision in tandem, we are opening a new era for real-time machine vision inspection in manufacturing.”

Launched in 2000, IVS manages the design, installation and commissioning of quality control vision robotics and machines for manufacturing companies. Their vision systems are used for inspection, guidance, identification, measurement, tracking and counting. Its systems are some of the most innovative and advanced machine vision solutions on the market today, successfully deployed in thousands of systems around the world.

For more information on Industrial Vision Systems, please visit: http://www.industrialvision.co.uk/