Discussion: 'Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity and the Future of Work'

Event Details

April 5, 2018
3:30 pm-5:30 pm

Olver Design Building

UMass Amherst Campus

Handicap access available

Join us for the "Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity and the Future of Work" welcome reception, keynote address and conversation. 

The keynote address will be delivered by Moshe Y. Vardi, George Distinguished Service professor in computational engineering and director of the Ken Kennedy Institute for Information Technology at Rice University. Vardi will speak on "Humans, Machines, and Work: The Future is Now."

Enobong (Anna) Branchassociate chancellor for equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer and associate professor of sociology at UMass Amherst, will speak on "A Critical Reflection on Racial Inequalities in the US Workforce and the Future of Work."

The event will focus on the disappearance of stable work and the precarity of employment as a growing problem in the U.S. that does not effect everyone equally. The race gap in pay, and lack of racial diversity in the science and engineering workforce who is responsible for designing technology, are problems that converge with changes in technology and work. These problems are compounded by spatial segregation, favoring skill-rich areas and leaving vulnerable populations further isolated.

Can emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) be imagined in a way that increases equity and diversity? Can we organize work in a way that contributes to the quality of technologies, and the productivity and satisfaction of workers in an increasingly diverse population? This project aims to convene experts in social sciences, computational sciences, and engineering in order to articulate the social and technical dimensions in understanding the challenges of shaping emergent technologies that are equitable and result in “good” jobs for a wider range of workers.

The event is presented by the Institute for Social Science Research in collaboration with the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, College of Information and Computing Sciences, Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning and the Chancellor's Office.

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