With the disruption of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions increasing, it’s important to think about what positive economic futures we want these AI solutions to help drive. The World Economic Forum asked more than 150 leaders in a variety of fields their vision of economic life in an AI-driven future. Here are the 6 most intriguing:
- Shared economic prosperity – AI-powered productivity boosts will increase the size of the global economy by 10 times, with this increased prosperity shared widely around the world. In turn, this increased sharing of prosperity will allow human to do more and achieve more while also providing a safety net for the most vulnerable. To accomplish this vision, international cooperation will have to be at a maximum level.
- Realigned companies – large companies will focus on developing and using AI solutions to the benefit of humanity as whole, without wielding excessive economic or political influence. To accomplish this vision, changes will need to be made in the ownerships structures of large companies, and antitrust policies will need to be updated.
- Flexible labor markets – as AI-based solutions take over many jobs, new jobs are created that require human creativity. To accomplish this vision, hands-on support and social safety nets will be required as people adapt to new roles.
- Human-central AI – business leaders and policy-makers choose to develop technologies that increase labor demands instead of replacing them. Eventually, society finds a ‘sweet spot’ in which humans and machines work together. To accomplish this vision, companies will need to work carefully to distinguish between solutions to complement workers and those that replace them. Additionally, tax structures will need to be redone to encourage companies to not automate jobs out of existence.
- Fulfilling jobs – new jobs are created that are more fulfilling for humans as AI-based solutions take over unsafe and tedious tasks. To accomplish this vision, labor unions will need to be strengthened, and workers will need to be more involved on corporate boards.
- Civic empowerment and human flourishing – with less need to work, there is more ability for people to undertake meaningful, unpaid activities that they find personally satisfying. To accomplish this vision, some form of universal basic income will be required.