The effect of technology on society.
Technology is a complex factor in rising levels of anger and loneliness.
Pervasive digital technology has also blurred the boundary between the workplace and home. Work-related emails often start before your are at work and continue long after close of business.
Even as professional pressures increasingly encroach upon private life, people often don’t have traditional support networks at home.
Decline in Human Empathy Creates Global Risks.
As today’s economy grows more interconnected, a new global phenomenon has emerged: the growing number of people who feel disconnected and isolated.
The percentage of single-person households in the U.K. has almost doubled over the last 50 years, with similar increases in the U.S., Germany and Japan.
The proportion of people feeling lonely in the U.K. climbed to 22 percent in 2017 from an average of 17 percent in 2014-2016.
These results mirror those of a study in American Sociological Review that looked at the number of close friends that people have. In 1985, the average number of close friends was 2.9; by 2004 it was 2.1. The percentage of people who responded that they had no close friends at all tripled over the same period.
Emotionally, people are quite lonely. Online connections research suggests that the degree of empathy is six times weaker than for real-world interactions.
Complex transformations areas:
1. societal, 2. technological and 3. work-related are creating an increasingly anxious, unhappy and lonely world, where anger is increasing and empathy appears to be in decline. A world of increasingly divided and angry people would be likely to generate volatile results and to decrease the chance of solving complex issues.
Compagnies can take a number of steps to help mitigate the consequences of the human consequences of technology.
- Improve mental health and well-being in the workplace
- Engage with society in a more meaningful way
Source Financial times - Global Risks Reports 2019