how would you best describe a manufacturing employee who has been fired because he was replaced by a robot and does not have the skills necessary to operate the robot?
Structural unemployment, one of the three types of unemployment, is associated with the mismatch of jobs and workers due to the lack of skills or simply the wrong area desired for work. Structural unemployment depends on the social needs of the economy and dynamic changes in the economy.
For instance,advances in technology and changes in market conditions often turn many skills obsolete; this typically increases the unemployment rate. For example, laborers who worked on cotton fields found their jobs obsolete with Eli Whitney's patenting of the cotton gin. Similarly, with the rise of computers, many jobs in manual book keeping have been replaced by highly efficient software. Workers who find themselves in this situation find that they need to acquire new skills in order to obtain a new job.