New article co-authored by Carr Center Technology and Human Rights Fellow Sherif Elsayed-Ali.
"We know that the technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution are drastically changing our world. This change is happening at a faster rate and greater scale than at any point in human history – and with that change come significant challenges to the ability of our public institutions and governments to adequately respond.
From the plough to vaccines to computers, technological innovations have generally made human societies more productive. Over time, people have figured out how to mitigate their negative aspects. For example, electrical applications are much safer to use now than in the early days of electrification. Though we came close to disaster, since the Second World War the international political system has managed to contain the threat of nuclear weapons for mass destruction.
However, the accelerating pace of change and the power of new technologies mean that negative unintended consequences will only become more frequent and more dangerous. What can we do today to help ensure that new technologies make life better, not worse?"