Theme: In Code We Trust
For the past eighteen years PR agency Edelman has been measuring World Wide Trust levels. The 2017 version of their trust barometer showed a Total Meltdown of trust in corporations and institutions while at the same time the trust in technology continues to be remarkably high.
One explanation for putting so much trust in tech, is the high expectations people have about future technological breakthroughs. There's so much that remains to be desired: from self-driving cars to frictionless shopping experiences. But will technology be able to live up to those expectations or are we in for a massive disillusion?
Trust is defined as a confident relationship with the unknown. But we're far from comfortable looking at the unknown future. We clearly see how trust is shifting from the institutional hierarchies towards the network economy. Every organization is at risk of being disrupted by a more trusted version of itself. Organizations like Tripadvisor, Amazon and Airbnb are using reviews and ratings to organize our trust. But at the same time, they are so successful at monetizing their platforms, that trust is becoming a monopoly. Can we trust markets where so much power is in the hand of just a few companies?
And while trust is steadily shifting, our perception of what is real and what is not continues to be disrupted. Facebook, Twitter and Google have primarily based their business models on advertising. These so-called attention merchants are massively publishing clickbait content and fake news to draw us in. Can we really put our trust in their code organizing our lives while losing grip on the truth?
So we should reconsider how to organize trust in a sustainable manner. Can we distribute trust in technology-based solutions such as the token economy, autonomous intelligent systems and self-organizing platforms? Are we trust-ready for the next digital waves, for instance in biotechnology? What are our options really and what should we take into consideration before we decide who and what to trust?
Michiel Boreel has worked in the IT Industry for over 21 years and since 2007 has held the role of Chief Technology Officer with Sogeti. Michiel started his IT career at a company now owned by Sogeti advising about the reverse engineering of legacy information systems and migration estimation methods.
In 1994, Sogeti asked Michiel to lead a new initiative, called the Institute for the Analysis of New Technology (VINT), a small research and trend spotting group with the goal of inspiring customers to apply new technology in business processes. A constant theme in all of the VINT research is the question what role IT will play in the future society and how technology can be applied to create meaningful business innovation.
In December 2011 VINT was complemented by SogetiLabs, also headed by Michiel Boreel.
Menno van Doorn leads the SogetiLabs Research Institute, which is part of technology provider, Sogeti for the analysis of new technologies. His field of expertise is human centered technology strategies. Educated in consumer psychology, he has co-authored books and studies on social media, mobile behavior, blockchain, IOT and artificial intelligence. Menno supports organizations in defining their happiness advantage and envisioning and designing happiness strategies.
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