As the world undergoes a great reset, our ability to harness and disseminate the new technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will play a key role in ensuring our recovery from the pandemic and the avoidance of future crises. However, if not directed with purpose, the 4IR has the potential to exacerbate inequality. We must take proactive steps to ensure technology adoption does not heighten abuse of power, bias, wealth disparities, exclusion, and loss of livelihoods.
The World Economic Forum is convening the first Global Technology Governance Summit in Tokyo and virtually on 6-7 April 2021 in close collaboration with the Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR) Network. This global network comprises more than 40 governments and international organizations as well as 150 companies.
The inaugural gathering of the GTGS will cover the following key topic areas in detail.
- Industry Transformation: No industry has been untouched by the global response to COVID-19. The world can no longer operate as it has, and as such markets will have to respond to its new and evolving needs. To survive, every business in the world will have to become a technology company.
- Government Transformation: The transformation of government will be front-and-center in the area of digital infrastructure as technology services become an essential public utility comparable to electricity, water, or roadways.
- Global Technology Governance: The extent to which the benefits of technology are maximized, and the risks mitigated depends on the quality of governance protocols – policies, norms, standards, and incentives that shape the development and deployment of technologies.
- Frontier Technologies: Embracing frontier technologies will be essential across all sectors as part of the great reset. Technologies such as 3D printing can revolutionize supply chains, enabling mass customization and offering new pathways to increase the circularity of products. or halt environmental damage caused by climate change.