Posts

2017 TPI Aspen Forum: Turn and Face the (Strange?) Changes

by

A new administration means new policy priorities. It also means new issues, angles, and discussions at this year’s TPI Aspen Forum.

The changes ahead are reflected in this year’s Aspen Forum theme, “New Directions in Technology Policy: Removing Barriers to Growth and Innovation.” Nearly across-the-board policy shifts will affect the technology and communications sectors, as well as the broader U.S. and global business environment. How will these shifts influence emerging technologies and, more broadly, innovation and economic growth?

The best event of the summer, therefore, will focus on some big issues.

One big area we’ll consider is automation and artificial intelligence. Will robots take our jobs? Are they already taking our jobs? Or, as with previous revolutions, will AI create new jobs, industries, and even new opportunities for existing businesses? How are benefits likely to be distributed across society and what is the government’s role?

Expect to see some brilliant minds discuss and debate policy issues related to AI out in Aspen.

(Need a primer on AI policy issues? Watch our newest TPI Short: Artificial Intelligence in 13 Minutes, or the full videos of the event Artificial Intelligence: The Economic and Policy Implications. Also, check out Robin Hanson’s fascinating discussion of his book “The Age of Em Work, Love and Life When Robots Rule the Earth” at last year’s Forum.)

We’ll also cover the Internet of Things this summer. What’s the real demand for such Things? What kind of network do we need to support the ever-expanding list of connected products? How do we get there? How concerned should we be about, and how should we handle, cybersecurity on the IOT? Will ISIS turn our coffee makers against us? Will the markets work out these issues, or is policy guidance needed at the federal level? We aim to solve these issues this summer, but even in the unlikely event we don’t, expect a fascinating discussion.

We will cover far more topics in the panel discussions, which I’ll be revealing in the next few months.

This year’s working groups will also reflect the changing technological and political climate. Will the DMCA finally be updated? What’s the status of autonomous vehicles, what are their implications, and what policy challenges do they face? Does our current regulatory system provide the right mix of spectrum licensing (or un-licensing) for our smartphones and ever-growing connected devices?

Some fascinating speakers and thought-leaders have already agreed to give keynotes. They will cover such diverse topics as “fake news,” privacy, EU-US data flows, and how ideas rather than institutions drive economic growth. But we plan to keep you on tenterhooks waiting for the names!

We’re sure that some rogue TPI staff will leak more details on this year’s agenda in due time. Until then, you can relive select keynotes and panels from last year’s Forum (and all the Forums back to 2010!) on the TPI YouTube channel.

If you haven’t registered yet for the TPI Aspen Forum you can do so here.