Digital Societies

Digital Societies

Digital technologies are rapidly transforming traditional economies and outpacing the legal and policy frameworks that ensure citizens’ privacy and civil liberties. Yet, digitalization is also the key to future innovation, offering promising new approaches for green technologies, creating new sectors of the global economy, facilitating democratic exchange and transparency, and rapidly increasing the pace of scientific discovery. We support a nuanced transatlantic dialogue on the challenges and opportunities of the digital age for democratic societies and the transatlantic partnership.

Global Governance for the Future: Digitalization and Decent Work

Background Paper

There are sweeping changes underway in production due to automation and digitalization, particularly in Indonesia. What policy changes should governments, the World Bank, and the IMF enact in order to ensure the creation of decent work for growing labor forces?

More on Digital Societies

Start-Up Detroit: How the Tech Revitalization Deepens Inequalities

Tech start-ups across the country like to portray themselves as savvy social entrepreneurs – whiz kids who use simple, data-based technologies to make our cities “smart” and “open.” But in the rush to modernize, the new generation of tech enthusiasts often neglects the complexities of urban communities, the tangled histories of racial discrimination and deep-seated socioeconomic divides. 

By Shilpa Jindia

The Makers who dream about low-cost healthcare solutions

Based in Brooklyn, the Health Maker Lab uses 3D printing technology to produce low-cost prostheses and medical instruments, with the aim of radically shifting the "relationship between the 1% and 99% of the population.” Hbs Media Fellow Giorgio Ghiglione met with one of its founders. 

By Giorgio Ghiglione

The Repair Association

In the United States the “right to repair” electronic devices is highly contested. Big manufacturers only allow for repairs carried out by authorized technicians using original spare parts, and they have US copyright law on their side. Now, The Repair Association is taking on multinationals to try to change things.

By Giorgio Ghiglione

Participation is Just One Click Away

According to digital experts, political campaigning in the US is at a turning point. Could California, where Silicon Valley is driving global tech innovation, offer new tools to take democracy into the digital age? The search for answers led Hbs Media Fellow Lena Schnabl to the University of California, Berkeley.

By Lena Schnabl

The Rebel Networks of New York

Today, two million New Yorkers do not have access to the Internet. Mesh, a project designed for the unemployed living on the outskirts of Brooklyn could overthrow the power of the "super providers" by providing free connections or a solid emergency network, as it did in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. House by house, one balcony at a time, this revolution advances one router at a time. 

By Giorgio Ghiglione
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