AI and tech-divide between redistributive challenge and shared work

AI and tech-divide between redistributive challenge and shared work

The challenge of work in the age of artificial intelligence will not be so much its survival - work will continue to exist - but rather the number of those who, due to the tech-divide, will remain on the margins of development and the new hyper-connected society. With all the consequences in terms of inequalities, democratic balances - linked above all to the excessive power of the new monopolists - and, last but not least, the existential purpose of people.

The panel "Technological unemployment: myth or truth?" while on the one hand it dilutes the concern for the immediate future (we will continue to have a job) it opens up no less disturbing and unexplored scenarios on the market's ability to maintain correct (fair) distances between subsidiaries, in addition to the decisive issue of the role of states in new, unbalanced eco-political balance of power.

The node of redistribution

Second Daniel Susskind (Oxford University) ”there won't be sudden changes in the next few years, the work will remain the same and will adapt to new contexts but what worries me most is that in the 21st century many will no longer be able to contribute to society . The problem, put like this, seems less serious but with important consequences”. For Susskind, the challenges of post-modernity will be of an economic nature ("inequalities show that the redistributive approach is in the balance, technological unemployment is the most extreme point of this process. The challenge is therefore a redistribution in society, if not the market does it more as in the past"), of a political sphere (the all-encompassing power of big tech) and, dramatically relevant, the challenge "of having a purpose in life".

New forms of power

By the way - he adds Aaron Benanev (New York University) - "we are experiencing the paradox of accelerating technology but at the same time the economy is slowing down towards stagnation". According to Benanev ”chatGpt will be able to help us improve productivity in certain sectors. Long-term consequences will not be so different from the recent past. In any case, we will have to work less and share the work to be done in order to have the starting point for dignified lives. Many jobs do not make people feel safe: this is a fundamental issue”. In the background remains the evolution of power, its concentration and its exercise.

For Susskind “it is right to talk about new forms of power. In the 20th century it was economic power, concentration, profits, price fixing, that was power. Today's challenge that worries us is the political power of corporations and the impact on democracy, social justice and freedom. Think of Facebook: we are not worried about economic dominance, but that it could influence the elections in the USA. Today there is a lack of institutions similar to the past to create antitrust laws, there are no adequate skills to understand and regulate. Policy makers are applying ancient remedies to these companies but it is a historically outdated and ineffective way to contain them".

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