On Wednesday 10th June 2009, I’m giving a conference at the Centre d’Estudis Jurídics i Formació Especialitzada, Justice Department of the Government of Catalonia (Spain). It is framed in the Web Sessions series to debate about the changes and impacts of the Information Society. My conference is called Darwin a la societat de la informació: adaptació (i beneficis) o extinció (Darwin at the Information Society: adaptation (and benefits) or extinction).
As the presentation shows, the speech is made up of four parts or general ideas:
- The industrial era — or the industrial economy — is based (among many other things) on two main issues: scarcity and transaction costs. These two limitations have shaped the world as we know it, especially institutions: schools, parties and governments, firms, civic associations… When shifting towards a knowledge based economy, both issues of scarcity and transaction costs fall down into pieces. Will institutions, and intermediation in general, follow?
- Second part is an overview on some of these institutions, and how their models and, sometimes, their sheer survival is threatened by these radical changes on costs and scarcity. Some will violently disappear, some will just fade, some will suffer adaptations along the following years. All in all, it’s about the risk of exclusion from society — not digital exclusion —, the risk of becoming worthless.
- Thus, there might be a need for new (digital) competences to face the present and the nearest future. These competences (to be acquired both by individuals and institutions) will be necessary to interact with each other and rebuild how we learn, work, or engage in politics or everyday life.
- To foster the acquisition of these competences some policies to foster the Information Society will have to be put to work, and the role of the government seems to be a crucial one
I will conclude that it all is a matter of bringing on changes while making sense of them.
- Browse: Darwin a la societat de la informació: adaptació (i beneficis) o extinció
- Browse: Darwin at the Information Society: adaptation (and benefits) or extinction
- Download: Darwin a la societat de la informació: adaptació (i beneficis) o extinció ( 10.4 MB)
- Download: Darwin at the Information Society: adaptation (and benefits) or extinction ( 8.68 MB)
- Slides from previous sessions, at Generalitat de Catalunya’s Slideshare
- Briefings from previous sessions, at Generalitat de Catalunya’s Sessions Web website.
I want to heartily thank Jordi Graells for giving me the excuse — actually, to push me — to sit down and put together some ideas that had been rambling on my mind for some time. The title is his and it was great inspiration that helped me in weaving those ideas together. Not surprisingly, his work with the Catalan e-Justice Community (Compartim) is a most inspiring one too.
If you need to cite this article in a formal way (i.e. for bibliographical purposes) I dare suggest:
Peña-López, I. (2009) “Darwin at the Information Society: adaptation (and benefits) or extinction” In ICTlogy,
#69, June 2009. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
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