Look around the bend and imagine how what constitutes government might need to change to keep pace with frontier technologies.
The Opportunity: We’re sort of at a weird moment in world history. The standard barometers of our economic and political health are getting a little wacky. The President of the IMF says the world economy won’t recover until 2018. Our political system lurches from one self-imposed crisis to the next.
And at the same time folks like Ray Kurzweil say we’re close to the singularity, people like Robert Gordon argue that the pace of innovation has slowed dramatically. Then you have intriguing thinkers like Isabella Kaminski wondering how close we are to a post-scarcity world in the real economy -- at least for some sectors. Mass proliferation of robots and/or additive manufacture might make many goods beyond abundant. Such possibilities hint at a foundationally new political economy.
The Challenge: Articulate what this technological potential means for government.
How might the aforementioned technological trends require or allow transformations in what constitutes government? What no regrets steps might we take today to confront these challenges? Feel free to go beyond what’s listed here and creatively explore truly pioneering insights.
Bonus points for weaving in quality science fiction parallels into your analysis (for instance Isaac Asimov’s Foundation Series’ conception of psychohistory into the implications of big data methodologies).
As featured / referenced in: