Beyond Robots and Universal Income: Experiments from Silicon Valley for Tackling Inequality

As technology drives economic change, the discussion of the future of work seems to be binary: either dystopian or rose colored. The public policy debate has congealed around a set of silver bullet solutions — from universal basic income to coding for all — that reflect Silicon Valley’s strategy for addressing economic inequality. But what if the best strategy isn’t a single moonshot, but a wealth of experiments? Every year Google answers trillions of search queries — and the results of those queries are the product of rigorous experimentation. Google's Senior Vice President of Global Affairs and Chief Legal Officer Kent Walker and Workers Lab co-founder and CEO Carmen Rojas propose taking a similar approach to the challenges of economic mobility, working with social innovators to tackle challenges around education, entrepreneurship, and the social safety net. They will share the early results from these projects, identify promising avenues for further experimentation, and propose that Silicon Valley should bring to the inequality debate a quality that it is not often known for: humility.

Festival: 2018

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