We asked experts from the world of science and technology to describe the societal challenges that they think matter in 2017 and beyond.
Over the past month, Future Now has been covering the “grand challenges” we face as a society in a series of articles, videos and graphics. We polled a panel of people from various fields about the vital issues they believe deserve more attention – you can browse 50 of those responses below, which we’ll continue to draw on throughout this year. There’s a lot to digest in one sitting – so dip in, reflect, come back…
Get out of your silo. If you can’t figure out the societal and cultural implications of what you’re doing, start seeking out people who might, and start systematically having lunch with them. And then invite the most interesting ones into your lab with the goal of them becoming partners. –Joel Garreau
The major new challenge in reporting news is the new shape of truth. Truth is no longer dictated by authorities, but is networked by peers. For every fact there is a counterfact. All those counterfacts and facts look identical online, which is confusing to most people. The only way a fact becomes accepted as true is to be networked with other facts consider to be true. Like in Science, all truth is provisional, although some is more provisional than others. The Truth is really a network of truths, and each of these true facts is probabilistic. The probability of a fact being true is increased by the degree it is networked with other true facts and the reliability of truthfulness by its source. So the challenge before us is to begin to construct a truth signaling layer into the fabric of facts, particularly online. This will be a multi-generational effort that will resemble the construction of wikipedia, but goes far beyond it. – Kevin Kelly