The US needs to stay ahead of tech trends and use cutting-edge technology to boost security as well as its international reputation as an innovator. To this end, government agencies are signing off on more and more contracts with tech corporations. Rekognition, Amazon’s facial-recognition software, is currently in use by law enforcement agencies in Oregon and in Orlando, Fla. Google was briefly involved in the US Department of Defense’s AI program, Project Maven. And Amazon is currently competing with Microsoft, IBM, and Oracle for a government contract for cloud computing.
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Get beyond those exclamation points, though, and you start to see the question marks and concerns — about global shifts in power, a potential wave of protectionism, and warnings that business leaders and policymakers should be “on guard” for the next recession and that global growth may be masking systemic financial, social and geographical risks. Economic volatility and policy uncertainty in the first quarter of 2018 have only increased those concerns.
- Is the rate of attaining a STEM degree or skillset keeping up with the evolving needs of society?
- Will advancements in automation and artificial intelligence reduce the demand for STEM workers?
- What policies should be considered to increase a nation’s competitiveness, in the age of artificial intelligence and automation?
Dr. Conrad Tucker, an associate professor of computer science and engineering at the Pennsylvania State University, and a science and policy fellow in the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, showcased his current research project, Technology Phobia Readiness Condition (TEPHCON), during the second international InfoSymbiotics/DDDAS conference at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.