The British Computer Society’s Engineering and Technology Forum and its Management Forum are launching a new blog looking at technology futures and their impact on society and on business.
The development is predicated on the belief that “As the development of technology continues to accelerate, our understanding of the social and organisational implications lags further behind”. It’s always been the case that technology doesn’t deliver social or competitive advantage. Changes in behaviour do deliver these, and can be facilitated by the right technology. Technology developments can provide the initial idea or the concept; but Facebook and Twitter are social phenomena with a technical foundation, and Google’s success is as much social as technical.
The FutureTech.FutureSoc initiative aims to bring the BCS’s network of IT practitioners into the debate – one which I shared in, a long time ago now, in a Methodist Church study called “Shaping Tomorrow”. This wasn’t only about IT (electronics, we called it in the early 80s); it looked at other issues, now more pertinent than ever, including energy and the environment, biotechnology, and the implications for society, for work and employment, and of course the theology of our approach. So I’ll be sharing in the debate.
• Future visions BCS, IT Now, Jan 2009
• Future Tech Blog from the BCS
• Shaping Tomorrow (Methodist Church Home Mission Division, 1981) is out of print, but there are a few Google links to reviews. If you have access to Nature you can find one at Nature 293, 251 – 251 (24 Sep 1981)