Kehityspoliittinen tilausselvitys: The role of Digitalization and Frontier Technologies in Enhancing Human Rights and Contributing to the Achievement of SDGs
The world is experiencing digitalization at a rapid pace and on a scale never seen before. However, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which is what industry experts are calling this current tidal wave of digitalization, is manifesting itself in different ways around the world. How we in the west are experiencing this revolution differs from how most people in sub-Saharan African countries are experiencing the role and impact of frontier digital technologies in their daily lives.
While there is no universal definition of ‘frontier technologies’, they are generally viewed as the next phase in the evolution of modern technology. This report focuses on digital frontier technologies. Thus, the term frontier technology in this report is used to describe especially AI, machine learning, big data analytics, blockchain, drones and the IoT. AI, machine learning, big data analytics, blockchain and drones seem to be the technologies used more in development cooperation and linked to SDGs, while there are not so many examples of IoT in this context.
This report examines the linkages between frontier technologies, human rights, and the 2030 Agenda with a geographical focus on sub-Saharan Africa – particularly from the perspective of “leave no one behind”. The line between frontier and more traditional digital technologies is somewhat blurry, and therefore these two are examined side by side throughout this report. There is limited current research or information available on the role and impact of frontier technologies on the principle of “leave no one behind”, which is a gap this report also aims to fill. The report is produced for the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. Therefore, the focus is especially on those Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that are most relevant for Finland’s development policy. Literature review is the main methodology used for the report. In addition, six expert interviews were conducted to complement the literature review.
The report in English
Leino, Irene & Winiecki, Emma. (2019). Leave No One Behind: The role of Digitalization and Frontier Technologies in Enhancing Human Rights and Contributing to the Achievement of SDGs.(Linkki toiselle web-sivustolle.)