A critical look at new technologies, new approaches and new ways of thinking, from politics to media to environmental sustainability.
Outsourcing, automation and the messiness of global labour
Automation and outsourcing are dirty words for many people in Western countries worried about their future employment prospects. Developing countries are seen to be the major beneficiaries of off-shore labour, with multinationals hoovering up increased profits. But the reality is a lot more complex and even messy. Now, even developing countries are starting to feel the pain.
The trouble with Tech-driven farming
New technologies are transforming agriculture, but getting farmers to experiment with different tech combinations remains an issue. A technologically-infused approach can bring benefits, but it also carries risks. In the developing world it can sometimes undermine traditional farming practices and increase inequality.
Ransomware – a very 21st century crime
The rush to go digital during Covid-19 has coincided with a marked rise in ransomware attacks. Some have a political dimension, some are merely opportunistic, but all make sound business sense from a criminal perspective. We discuss the ins and outs of ransomware operations and meet a man whose job is to negotiate with the criminals.
A non-proliferation treaty for fossil fuels
It’s time to attack the “supply side” of fossil fuels, activists argue. And the best way to do that is by establishing a fuel non-proliferation treaty similar to the one used for nuclear weapons. But what would it entail and could it ever work? Also, the sticky relationship between online personalisation and consent; and a call for CEOs to become the next target of automation.
Litigating our way out of climate change
Responses to climate change are often marked by frustration as much as fear. Those seeking to end our fossil-fuel dependency are increasingly turning to litigation to force the hands of companies and governments - often on human rights grounds. But do the courts have a legitimate role to play in leading the way? Or is this a form of judicial activism?
Some foresight about the future of foresight
Trying to predict the future is a timeless and time-consuming pursuit. Artificial Intelligence is increasingly being enlisted to the cause, but so too are “super-forecasters” – a new coterie of individuals with remarkable predictive powers. But what are their limits and what does their rise say about the still popular notion of collective intelligence – the wisdom of the crowd? Future Tense looks at the changing role of humans in forecasting.
Mapping the Future
This show tackles a new concept about the future every week.
Whether it’s the future of corruption in politics, innovation in the business world, new sources of energy, transportation, robotics or communication, this show maps it out in fascinating detail. Great guests, great production.
I was furious listening to this
Wow, an episode about the future of entrepreneurship and innovation which featured no entrepreneurs or innovators.
Be sure to check out the next Episode, “The future of space travel”, featuring interviews with a house painter and a bottle of laundry detergent.
I've been listening to Future Tense on RN & Radio Australia since 2009 and what won me over early on was a show on the Future of Conferences. Events need to evolve and this particular show was a show and tell of what can work well if we do things differently. Future Tense helps listeners become future fit. Gameification on!