Category: Societal Impact

Book Review: Hacking Diversity: The Politics of Inclusion in Open Technology Cultures

By on May 21st, 2021 in Book Reviews, Ethics, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Open technology communities are loosely organized, volunteer, online groups, focused on development and distribution of open or free software and hardware. “Hacking Diversity:The Politics of Inclusion in Open Technology Cultures”  is a study of the efforts of open technology communities to “hack” the issues around the lack of diversity that pervades not only their volunteer communities, but also their related disciplines at large.

Toward a More Equal World: The Human Rights Approach to Extending the Benefits of Artificial Intelligence

By on April 29th, 2021 in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Editorial & Opinion, Environment, Ethics, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

There is huge potential for artificial intelligence (AI) to bring massive benefits to under-served populations, advancing equal access to public services such as health, education, social assistance, or public transportation, AI can also drive inequality, concentrating wealth, resources, and decision-making power in the hands of a few countries, companies, or citizens. Artificial intelligence for equity (AI4Eq) calls upon academics, AI developers, civil society, and government policy-makers to work collaboratively toward a technological transformation that increases the benefits to society, reduces inequality, and aims to leave no one behind.

Artificial Intelligence for a Fair, Just, and Equitable World

By on April 21st, 2021 in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Editorial & Opinion, Ethics, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

From the 1970s onward, we started to dream of the leisure society in which, thanks to technological progress and consequent increase in productivity, working hours would be minimized and we would all live in abundance. We all could devote our time almost exclusively to personal relationships, contact with nature, sciences, the arts, playful activities, and so on. Today, this utopia seems more unattainable than it did then. Since the 21st century, we have seen inequalities increasingly accentuated: of the increase in wealth in the United States between 2006 and 2018, adjusted for inflation and population growth, more than 87% went to the richest 10% of the population, and the poorest 50% lost wealth .

Governing in Bad Faith: Suppressing Democracy in Pretense of “Saving Democracy”

By on April 19th, 2021 in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Editorial & Opinion, Ethics, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Understanding the societal trajectory induced by AI, and anticipating its directions so that we might apply it for achieving equity, is a sociological, ethical, legal, cultural, generational, educational, and political problem.

Call for Papers: After Covid-19: Crises, Ethics, and Socio-Technical Change

By on March 19th, 2021 in Call for Papers, Health & Medical, Human Impacts, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact, Transactions

Crises expose the fragility and resilience of our sociotechnical systems – from healthcare to financial markets, internet connectivity, and local communities. Submissions are especially invited on but not limited to the following topics intersecting with COVID-19 and crises:

The Citizen Question: Making Identities Visible Via Facial Recognition Software at the Border

By on March 1st, 2021 in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Ethics, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Examining how face recognition software is used to identify and sort citizenship within mechanisms like the Biometric Air Exit (BAE) is immensely important; alongside this, the process of how “citizen” and “noncitizen” is defined, as data points within larger mechanisms like the BAE, need to be made transparent.

Cyberbiosecurity, Ecopsychology, and Beyond: Our Formidable PIT Community

By on February 15th, 2021 in Environment, Ethics, Human Impacts, Last Word, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Public Interest Technology (PIT) is defined as “technology practitioners who focus on social justice, the common good, and/or the public…  Read More

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.

Book Review: Their Own Devices

By on January 15th, 2021 in Book Reviews, Environment, Ethics, Health & Medical, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Albright’s book focuses on a group of Americans who live a life of digital hyper-connectivity. Mostly under age 50, this would include what are called Generation X (born between 1965 and 1979), Millennials (born between 1980 and 1999), and their offspring — some, as we have seen, still infants.

Thinking about Racism in Engineering Education in New Ways

By on January 10th, 2021 in Commentary, Ethics, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Contemporary circumstances in the United States, both in broader politics, recent protest movements around police brutality, and in the demographics of engineering education, have prompted us to look for new ways to bring theory on gender, race, and class to audiences who would not normally consider it their usual reading.

For Richer, for Poorer – The Digital Economy

By on December 27th, 2020 in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Ethics, Human Impacts, Interview, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

Technological determinism is a myth; there are always underlying economic motivations for emergence of new technologies. The idea that technology leads development is not necessarily true, for example, con-sider AI. It has been a topic of inter-est to researchers for decades, but only recently has the funding caught up, matching the motivation and enabling the development of AI-ori-ented technologies to really take off.

The Black Skyscraper

By on December 4th, 2020 in Book Reviews, Environment, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

It is “seeing” that is most compelling when analyzing the relationship between architecture and race, especially, for example, when reexamined in literary works such as F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Adrienne Brown, a professor who specializes in American and African American cultural production at the University of Chicago, takes her readers on a journey that recounts seeing racial characteristics in the early period of American skyscraper construction.

A Billion Little Pieces

By on November 21st, 2020 in Book Reviews, Human Impacts, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

RFID, even though it underlies electronic toll collection and other systems we interact with every day and is poised to become practically ubiquitous, is far less conspicuous. Jordan Firth’s A Billion Little Pieces aims to bring RFID into the foreground, giving readers a sense of what the technology is, how it is being and could be used, and how concerned we should be about its implications, especially those regarding privacy.

Starts Thursday November 12 – IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society 2020 (ISTAS ’20)

By on November 11th, 2020 in Conferences, Magazine Articles, Social Implications of Technology, Societal Impact

*Now a Virtual Conference* — IEEE ISTAS 2020 Public Interest Technology (Arizona State University) November 12 – November 14 – The International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS) is the flagship conference of the IEEE’s Society on the Social Implications of Technology- the oldest society and conference of its kind.  ISTAS is a multi/inter/trans-disciplinary forum for engineers, policy makers, entrepreneurs, philosophers, researchers, social scientists, technologists, and polymaths to collaborate, exchange experiences, and discuss the social implications of technology.