Emerging Technology and Impact Investing
In the field of ethics, there is a school of increasing relevance known as effective altruism. It’s best described as the quantification of philanthropic efforts and their results with a corresponding drive to increase the measurable impact of such. As technology has increased in power and application potential at an exponential pace, the principles of effective altruism have found a home in the data-heavy evaluation landscape.
Ideally, in the interest of transparency in this documentation and refinement, we would love to see an explorable ledger of what is happening from an impact perspective. And, because of the power of the blockchain, everyone in the world would be able to go to this ledger and see a dashboard displaying total input and its effectiveness in terms of total impact. Technically, anyone delivering, funding, or evaluating impact has access to this underlying data that lets them perform more effectively, providing the greatest benefit to the greatest number of people.
There’s a whole community of developers who are building on the data layer and on the network, whether that’s IoT devices doing censoring or Ethereum running a impact-tracking blockchain, there’s a whole world of practical applications that can be built on the network.
The UN hopes that by 2030 we can can have a major impact on averting climate change. Looking at the details of the suggested measures to achieve this (the specifics of the goals), though, they tend to be much less ambitious and more achievable. Threats on every level from overpopulation to climate change to natural resource depletion are reaching their tipping points, and the only way that humanity can survive and thrive is to generate responsive tipping points based on big data and effective impact analysis.
It seems that there will be massive momentum to such aims in the coming years, aided by the convergence of technologies such as AI, IoT, blockchain, renewable energy, and more. All of these exponentially-growing sectors of innovation coming together will create a profoundly different set of operating systems and paradigms over the next decade.
The world thought that the last 10 years served as a massive leap through revolutionary technological change. Thanks to the synergy of the blockchain and the convergence of nearly every cutting-edge technology, though, we have reason to suspect that the next 10 years will be even more profound.