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Collective intelligence at EU level: Social and democratic dimensions

31-03-2020

Humans are among the many living species capable of collaborative and imaginative thinking. While it is widely agreed among scholars that this capacity has contributed to making humans the dominant species, other crucial questions remain open to debate. Is it possible to encourage large groups of people to engage in collective thinking? Is it possible to coordinate citizens to find solutions to address global challenges? Some scholars claim that large groups of independent, motivated, and well-informed ...

Humans are among the many living species capable of collaborative and imaginative thinking. While it is widely agreed among scholars that this capacity has contributed to making humans the dominant species, other crucial questions remain open to debate. Is it possible to encourage large groups of people to engage in collective thinking? Is it possible to coordinate citizens to find solutions to address global challenges? Some scholars claim that large groups of independent, motivated, and well-informed people can, collectively, make better decisions than isolated individuals can – what is known as 'collective intelligence.' The social dimension of collective intelligence mainly relates to social aspects of the economy and of innovation. It shows that a holistic approach to innovation – one that includes not only technological but also social aspects – can greatly contribute to the EU's goal of promoting a just transition for everyone to a sustainable and green economy in the digital age. The EU has been taking concrete action to promote social innovation by supporting the development of its theory and practice. Mainly through funding programmes, it helps to seek new types of partners and build new capacity – and thus shape the future of local and national innovations aimed at societal needs. The democratic dimension suggests that the power of the collective can be leveraged so as to improve public decision-making systems. Supported by technology, policy-makers can harness the 'civic surplus' of citizens – thus providing smarter solutions to regulatory challenges. This is particularly relevant at EU level in view of the planned Conference on the Future of Europe, aimed at engaging communities at large and making EU decision-making more inclusive and participatory. The current coronavirus crisis is likely to change society and our economy in ways as yet too early to predict, but recovery after the crisis will require new ways of thinking and acting to overcome common challenges, and thus making use of our collective intelligence should be more urgent than ever. In the longer term, in order to mobilise collective intelligence across the EU and to fully exploit its innovative potential, the EU needs to strengthen its education policies and promote a shared understanding of a holistic approach to innovation and of collective intelligence – and thus become a 'global brain,' with a solid institutional set-up at the centre of a subsidised experimentation process that meets the challenges imposed by modern-day transformations.

Rethinking education in the digital age

31-03-2020

Traditional roles, content and methods of education are being challenged – today’s education needs to prepare students for changing tasks and roles both in the labour market and as European citizens. Rethinking education in the digital age should become a central matter for today’s policy-makers and matters for safeguarding European values such as equality, democracy and the rule of law. The current study presents policy options on the basis of a thorough analysis of current strengths and weaknesses ...

Traditional roles, content and methods of education are being challenged – today’s education needs to prepare students for changing tasks and roles both in the labour market and as European citizens. Rethinking education in the digital age should become a central matter for today’s policy-makers and matters for safeguarding European values such as equality, democracy and the rule of law. The current study presents policy options on the basis of a thorough analysis of current strengths and weaknesses, as well as future opportunities and threats for education in the digital age.

Parlamendiväline autor

DG, EPRS_This study has been written by VDI Technologiezentrum GmbH at the request of the Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA) and managed by the Scientific Foresight Unit of the Directorate for Impact Assessment and European Added Value, within the Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (EPRS) of the Secretariat of the European Parliament.

The ethics of artificial intelligence: Issues and initiatives

11-03-2020

This study deals with the ethical implications and moral questions that arise from the development and implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. It also reviews the guidelines and frameworks that countries and regions around the world have created to address these. It presents a comparison between the current main frameworks and the main ethical issues, and highlights gaps around mechanisms of fair benefit sharing; assigning of responsibility; exploitation of workers; energy demands ...

This study deals with the ethical implications and moral questions that arise from the development and implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. It also reviews the guidelines and frameworks that countries and regions around the world have created to address these. It presents a comparison between the current main frameworks and the main ethical issues, and highlights gaps around mechanisms of fair benefit sharing; assigning of responsibility; exploitation of workers; energy demands in the context of environmental and climate changes; and more complex and less certain implications of AI, such as those regarding human relationships.

Parlamendiväline autor

DG, EPRS This study has been drafted by Eleanor Bird, Jasmin Fox-Skelly, Nicola Jenner, Ruth Larbey, Emma Weitkamp and Alan Winfield from the Science Communication Unit at the University of the West of England, at the request of the Panel for the Future of Science and Technology (STOA), and managed by the Scientific Foresight Unit, within the Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services (EPRS) of the Secretariat of the European Parliament.

What if we could fight coronavirus with artificial intelligence?

10-03-2020

Αs coronavirus spreads, raising fears of a worldwide pandemic, international organisations and scientists are using artificial intelligence to track the epidemic in real-time, effectively predict where the virus might appear next and develop effective responses. Its multifaceted applications in the frame of this public health emergency raise questions about the legal and ethical soundness of its implementation.

Αs coronavirus spreads, raising fears of a worldwide pandemic, international organisations and scientists are using artificial intelligence to track the epidemic in real-time, effectively predict where the virus might appear next and develop effective responses. Its multifaceted applications in the frame of this public health emergency raise questions about the legal and ethical soundness of its implementation.

What if artificial intelligence made work obsolete?

02-03-2020

How can we ensure an equitable distribution of costs and benefits of AI development? How should curriculums be updated for the digital age? How can continual learning be mobilised in anticipation of the next wave of workplace automation? How can we prepare for new career paths in the age of artificial intelligence? How can we protect platform workers and employers vulnerable to AI development?

How can we ensure an equitable distribution of costs and benefits of AI development? How should curriculums be updated for the digital age? How can continual learning be mobilised in anticipation of the next wave of workplace automation? How can we prepare for new career paths in the age of artificial intelligence? How can we protect platform workers and employers vulnerable to AI development?

Demographic outlook for the European Union 2020

02-03-2020

Demography matters. The economy and the labour market, but also social protection, intergenerational fairness and healthcare, the environment, food and nutrition are all driven by demography. The population of EU countries has grown substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently it stands at almost 450 million. The numbers are now beginning to stagnate however and are expected to decline from around the middle of the century. With the world population having risen still more substantially ...

Demography matters. The economy and the labour market, but also social protection, intergenerational fairness and healthcare, the environment, food and nutrition are all driven by demography. The population of EU countries has grown substantially – by around a quarter since 1960 – and currently it stands at almost 450 million. The numbers are now beginning to stagnate however and are expected to decline from around the middle of the century. With the world population having risen still more substantially and growth continuing, the EU represents a shrinking proportion of the global population. The EU population is also ageing dramatically, as life expectancy increases and fertility rates fall below past levels. This has serious implications across a range of areas including the economy, healthcare and pensions. Free movement within the EU and migration from third countries also play an important role in shaping demography in individual Member States and regions. The 'in-focus' section of this year's edition of the demographic outlook examines food and nutrition-related demographic challenges. It shows that, even if improving food quality and healthier eating habits lead to higher life expectancy, the EU still has to tackle the harmful consequences and prevent the causes of diet-related chronic conditions, such as obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. This paper is the third in a series produced by EPRS on the demographic outlook for the European Union.

The 2019 ESPAS Conference: Some useful take-aways

31-01-2020

What are the probable and less probable developments of ageing? How should university deal with the disrespect for facts? Will we see a multipolar or poly-nodal world? What will be the main causes of inequality? What can government do to prevent undesired futures? The 2019 ESPAS Conference was devoted to foresight, the disciplined exploration of alternative futures and had some useful take-aways in these questions

What are the probable and less probable developments of ageing? How should university deal with the disrespect for facts? Will we see a multipolar or poly-nodal world? What will be the main causes of inequality? What can government do to prevent undesired futures? The 2019 ESPAS Conference was devoted to foresight, the disciplined exploration of alternative futures and had some useful take-aways in these questions

The mental health of workers in the digital era

15-01-2020

This briefing aims to provide EMPL Committee Members (and other readers) with an insight into how recent technical innovation and its pace affect the mental well-being of workers. It summarises the findings of the relevant literature and identifies areas requiring further research or data collection.

This briefing aims to provide EMPL Committee Members (and other readers) with an insight into how recent technical innovation and its pace affect the mental well-being of workers. It summarises the findings of the relevant literature and identifies areas requiring further research or data collection.

Parlamendiväline autor

Richard Graveling et al.

The impact of the free movement of economically active citizens within the EU

18-12-2019

In recent years employment rates increased for nationals and mobile EU-citizens especially when minimum wages and/or collective agreements were in place. The free movement leads to higher employment, higher productivity and income, and has a positive impact on taxes and social contributions. However, the vocational qualifications are not fully recognized, therefore the potential cannot be used to the full extent.

In recent years employment rates increased for nationals and mobile EU-citizens especially when minimum wages and/or collective agreements were in place. The free movement leads to higher employment, higher productivity and income, and has a positive impact on taxes and social contributions. However, the vocational qualifications are not fully recognized, therefore the potential cannot be used to the full extent.

Parlamendiväline autor

Müller, Klaus

Global Trendometer 2019

18-12-2019

The new Global Trendometer examines topics ranging from deliberative democracy and the future of social policy in Europe, to scenarios for Northern Africa, China's social credit system, the auditing of algorithms and space as a new frontier.

The new Global Trendometer examines topics ranging from deliberative democracy and the future of social policy in Europe, to scenarios for Northern Africa, China's social credit system, the auditing of algorithms and space as a new frontier.

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