Many Europeans believe that algorithms, and not people, should run the country. In matters of politics, machine intelligence is credible. But in general, new technologies more often frighten. The main fear is to remain without work.
IE University analysts (Spain) surveyed 2,500 adults from seven European countries in January, including the largest economies in the region – the UK, Germany and France. The authors of the study wanted to find out how Europeans relate to new technologies that the Fourth Industrial Revolution will make ubiquitous.
“Our survey confirmed the observations of many experts: a sense of uncertainty and insecurity in society is growing,” experts at IE University say.
Two-thirds of Europeans fear that without proper control, new technologies will harm society.
Most respondents hope that states will intervene in technological progress and limit uncontrolled development through new laws and taxes. Only in this way, according to the inhabitants of Europe, people can be protected from unemployment. The researchers noted that this opinion is shared by Europeans regardless of gender, age and country of residence.
Many are also worried about the popularity of social networks. Two thirds of respondents believe that people spend too much time on the Internet to the detriment of real-life communication. More than 50% of Europeans believe that in order to protect democracy, social and ideological content should be banned on social networks.
The survey also pointed to the dissatisfaction of citizens in many areas. Most recognize that the educational system and corporate environment do not help a person to adapt to changes in the labor market.
Immediately 40% of respondents admit that in the next decade their company will cease to exist, since it will not be able to adapt to changing conditions.
It turned out that politicians from Europeans are also disappointing. A quarter of respondents are ready to entrust the management of the country to artificial intelligence.
“Such sentiments indicate a growing mistrust of citizens towards the state and politicians and, in general, cast doubt on the European model of representative democracy,” the authors note.
IE University points to a paradoxical situation. People lose confidence in government institutions, but at the same time they want the state to control progress and protect citizens from the invasion of robots and algorithms.
Some analysts believe that automation will cover the world, like the Great Depression, and only a competent development strategy, the analogue of Roosevelt’s New Deal, can affect the situation. Others believe that AI is a threat to democracy and will generate new forms of governance, for example, algocracy.