In today’s blog, I am going to talk about Thinking innovatively about the risks of tech innovation. Reading the ebullient reports, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything other than overflowing optimism for how technology will transform our lives. And admittedly, it’s hard to imagine how smart shoes or a rollable TV screen could possibly be bad for us. From virtual reality so “there” you can almost touch it, to the Internet of every imaginable thing, we’re being dazzled by the seemingly infinite possibilities that modern tech has to offer. To learn this in detail watch this video Thinking innovatively about the risks of tech innovation.
All technologies come with risks
With the uncritical enthusiasm around CES, it’s easy to ignore the potential consequences of irresponsible technology innovation. It’s even easier to turn a blind eye to the challenges we face in developing technologies that are good for society as a whole, and don’t just enrich those who create them.
Take for example robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT) – three trends that were amply represented at the show. While each holds the potential to profoundly change our lives for the better, these technologies are by no stretch of the imagination intrinsically safe. Fears over the consequences of irresponsible AI development have already been widely voiced, and the rapid rise of the Internet of Things threatens to make everyday objects vulnerable to cyber attacks. And all three have the potential to widen the gap between the privileged and the disadvantaged.
How do we rethink risk?
Here in the Arizona State University Risk Innovation Lab, we’re developing a new approach to risk that is designed to open up new ideas and possibilities. We call it Risk Innovation.This in itself is an innovative way of thinking about risk. It opens up new ways of imagining the risk landscapes that new technologies both face and help to form.To me, it’s the individuals, communities and organizations – the constituents – who have something of tangible value that is potentially threatened, and that they are willing to invest in protecting.