For the construction industry, technology continues to have an impact on nearly every aspect of business. Still, there is debate about just how technology such as AI (artificial intelligence) will impact aspects of the future, for instance, the workplace and job market of tomorrow.

The Millennium Project, www.millennium-project.org, a global participatory think tank, aims to address some of these questions by identifying important long-range challenges and conducting foresight studies, workshops, symposiums, and training. The think tank’s goal is to accumulate wisdom about the future in order to empower better decisionmaking today.

With this goal in mind, The Millennium Project has announced its Future Work/Technology 2050 Real-Time Delphi study, a global project that will delve into different scenarios and strategies to address the “future dynamics” of work and technology. For instance, will future technology create more jobs than it replaces? Is AI a dangerous concept, especially taking into consideration the possibility of the technology growing beyond human control?

These concerns are relevant today as society tips the scale toward a more connected world. Regarding AI, for instance, Jerome Glenn, CEO of The Millennium Project, says: “Whether AI does or does not become the nightmare of some science fiction, we are certain it will have fundamental impacts on the nature of work, worldwide. And the world needs to think seriously about this now, because it may take a generation or more to make serious changes necessary to improve our work-technology future prospects.”

Further, the forthcoming study will ask questions such as: What actions will be the most effective in creating new work and/or income to address technological unemployment? Will wealth from advanced technologies continue to accumulate income to the very wealthy, increasing the income gaps? And will the cost of living be significantly reduced by 2050 due to future forms of AI robotic and nanotech manufacturing, 3D/4D printing, future Internet services, and other future production and distribution systems?

From AI and robotics to the Internet of Things, drones, and 3D/4D printing, among others, the Millennium Project will help start the conversation of how current and future technologies will change the nature of life and work in the next several decades.

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