“A is better off when B is better off.
“B is better off when A is better off.”
The purpose of #NewMacy is to catalyze conversations across disciplines, geographies, and generations. Such scope is demanded in order to design actionable responses to any of the many great challenges of our time — pandemics of biology and technology, racism and inequality, environment and economics. These are all challenges that have run out of control, a consequence of interactions that ricochet through physical, biological, and social domains, reinforcing their own spirals while causing or accelerating others. These challenges are unpredictable and deeply destructive. We must accept that science, governance, social movements, technology, and design have failed to curtail them.
A primary example of such “wicked” challenges is that of today’s artificial intelligence systems, defined here as the powerful, ubiquitous tech platforms (such as Facebook, Google, Amazon) that bend the thinking and the lives of billions of people every day. Other AI-based systems (such as social credit scoring, facial recognition, and recidivism algorithms) impose social or racial bias, further oppressing those already victimized by economic inequality and systemic racism. “Today’s AI” determines so much of the world we see and the world we live in — a pandemic by definition. “Pan” meaning “all”, “demos” meaning “the people”, pandemics are negative circumstances that affect an entire population.
The #NewMacy initiative calls for conversations interwoven with viable action that responds to today’s wicked challenges. Intended outcomes from #NewMacy conversations include:
Reframing of today’s wicked challenges to clear paths to action, beginning with “Rethinking Today’s AI”
Progressing to related social, technical, and ecological topics and their intersection
Evolving a shared understanding through systemic models and actionable plans that strive to mitigate negative effects
Nourishing new generations of contributors across disciplines, geographies, cultures, socioeconomic status, gender, sexual identity, political leaning, race, ethnicity, and age
Connecting with organizations and individuals who are current participants in a given domain and therefore in a position to bring about change
Harnessing of existing communities of practice while generating new ones
Producing design patterns, case studies, and workshop kits, offered as open-source and widely shared to encourage active learning
For further information or to become involved, contact [email protected]