One of the most significant trends in the profession is the shift from unstructured to structured authoring...Yet early research indicates that approximately 1 in 5, perhaps even 1 in 4, people currently working as technical communicators will not be able to grasp the concepts of structured authoring.
First, a peeve: Having printed this startling assertion, did intercom provide any sort of citation so that we could go look at this early research for ourselves? No. I'm going to do a bit of searching later, and see if I can turn something up.
Second, does anyone find it ironic that a profession that specializes in understanding and communicating unfamiliar concepts is allegedly facing a situation where as much as 1/4 of its work force may be left behind because they can't understand a new set of concepts?
Speaking as someone who is in the midst of transitioning from unstructured to structured authoring, I can vouch for its representing a huge conceptual shift. It's changing my job in all kinds of interesting ways, and some of them have not been easy to adapt to. Still, I find the blanket statement that some technical communicators "will not be able to grasp the concepts of structured authoring" startling. I pretty much believe that anyone can learn anything with sufficient motivation and a good teacher. Keeping your job is pretty good motivation. Maybe it's the teachers that are lacking?