Category: Blog Posts

Call for Papers — IEEE TSM Special Issue on “After Covid-19: Crises, Ethics, and Socio-Technical Change”

By on October 5th, 2021 in Blog Posts, Call for Papers, Health & Medical, Human Impacts, Privacy & Security, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact, Transactions

As the COVID-19 pandemic shows, crises can catalyze socio-technical changes at a speed and scale otherwise thought impossible. Crises expose the fragility and resilience of our sociotechnical systems – from healthcare to financial markets, internet connectivity, and local communities.

Call for Papers: Special Issue on Socio-Technical Ecosystem Considerations: Threats and Opportunities for AI in Cybersecurity

By on October 5th, 2021 in Articles, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Blog Posts, Call for Papers, Call for Papers, Ethics, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact, Transactions

An element of the expansion of digital technologies is a shift in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology from research laboratories into the hands of anyone with a smartphone. AI powered search, personalization and automation are being deployed across sectors, from education to healthcare, to policing, to finance. Wide AI diffusion is then reshaping the way organizations, communities and individuals’ function. The potentially radical consequences of AI have pushed nation states across the globe to publish strategies on how they seek to shape, drive and leverage the disruptive capabilities offered by AI technologies to bolster their prosperity and security.

When Outlandish Science Fiction Becomes Real

By on September 5th, 2021 in Blog Posts, Case Studies, Environment, Health & Medical, Human Impacts, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

The nuclear anxiety of the Cold War now seems quaint. While speculative writers of the late 20th-early 21st centuries have largely relegated nukes to the past, the situation at San Onofre reminds us of our sins — of assuming the future would take care of the future. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission enabled this consensual hallucination. Did it take climate change into consideration?

Facing the Fragility of the Man-Made World

By on August 7th, 2021 in Articles, Blog Posts, Case Studies, Environment, Ethics, Human Impacts, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

When we see a built world, we tend to take its permanence and stability for granted. For those who have chosen coastal homes, that built world goes back at least 50 years, with few residents ever realizing that oceans, lakes, and rivers are living entities constantly in motion. The average person relies upon experts such as architects and civil engineers, and supposed guardrails such as state building codes and homeowner associations, to assess safety when purchasing property. But the 21st-century assumption that the built world is stable is a risky bet. Especially in “business-friendly” states. 

Living in a Kludge*: Do We Want to Save the Future?

By on January 17th, 2021 in Blog Posts, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Principles taught to STEM students state that “engineers must gain an understanding of all the issues surrounding a particular design challenge. These issues might include the need for the project, relevant social and economic conditions of the target population, and project constraints and requirements.” Engineers and problem-solvers are not the problem. Short-term thinking is the problem. Wishful thinking is the problem. “It will do for now” is the problem.

Does the Truth Matter?

By on May 27th, 2020 in Blog Posts, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

If only we knew more about the world that we live in. If only we understood that all things are interconnected. If only we could learn to value ethics above rank profiteering. We would make better decisions for ourselves and for our society. We would make good moral decisions. But we now know that access to factual knowledge does not necessarily improve the world. We are living that reality today.