Technology has always helped to address major issues that the world faced right from the times of the First Industrial Revolution that introduced new manufacturing processes in the United States and Europe between 1760 and 1840. It marked the beginning of a new era of using machines for producing goods instead of manual methods of manufacturing by power generated from steam and water and introduced machine tools that we still use today.
The technological advancements had a far-reaching impact on the society and economy as it empowered people and helped in solving problems they faced to make the world a better place to live. It increased the material wealth, too, that brought about significant social change while significantly increasing economic productivity.
Since then, entrepreneurs and world leaders have embraced technology for finding solutions to problems that hinder human progress. By using appropriate technology, it is possible to address various global issues and provide a new direction in resolving issues that help in elevating lives. Technological advancements have brought amazing benefits for the society that have pushed almost half of the world towards a bright future. But there are lots of issues plaguing the other half of the population that suffers from hunger, poverty, health and hygiene issues, and several other problems.
Internet is the biggest development
The most significant technological development that has touched upon every aspect of our lives and ushered in the new world order is the internet that abolished the barriers of communication and helped in resolving numerous issues that the world faced by spreading and sharing information more easily. The internet has provided effective channels of communication through seamless information sharing across various sections of people that helped to resolve several socio-economic problems of the world.
Most importantly, the opening of the information highway has not only helped in the direct resolution of many issues but also has acted as a major resource for the development of other technologies. The advent of social media platforms and the revolutionary role of mobile phones would not have been possible without internet connectivity.
The opening of the communication channels has created a sense of inclusiveness among people who can now collaborate in a much better way to address issues and resolve problems and pave the path for development. For example, to overcome the constraints of water resources and reduce the dependence on traditional water sources that can be uncertain and risky, the development of hydro panels has created a new water source that assures a steady supply of water. To know more about it, log on to BigDropInc.com.
The introduction of the new technology of Artificial Intelligence has helped to augment the efforts in data collection by using the internet, which helps to curate information and put it to good use for resolving issues to move ahead. It has helped in the identification of medical concerns, improving safety among the communities, and the ability to develop renewable food sources, to name a few. The list of problems that the world is facing is quite long, and so are the available technologies that can resolve it.
Here is a look at the areas where technology plays a significant role in addressing socio-economic issues ranging from climate change to alleviating poverty and hunger, and many more.
Chronic hunger affects 11% of the world population that translates into more than 800 million people. The world hunger level was downhill for a decade until 2017 when the United Nations announced that there had been a steady increase in the number of people suffering from hunger. The problem is not due to a shortage of food production as there is enough food to feed all people around the year, but food wastage is very significant even in developing countries.
In a move towards eliminating world hunger, the internet plays a major role in facilitating the use of agricultural devices linked to the IoT (Internet of Things) to gather information about crop health that helps in yield quality improvement. By implementing IoT enabled devices in the distribution network, it is possible to reduce the loss and damage of foodstuff besides providing data-driven insights that aid in eliminating world hunger.
Countering climate change
Humans have abused the environment so much that nature is now taking its revenge. It is evident from the widespread impact of climate change that is likely to change the way we live. Helpless as we may feel in the face of nature’s fury, technology brings some hope of slowing down the climate change that can provide some relief to the stressed lives even though it can do little to reverse the damage already done.
Technology is helping to reduce the carbon footprint by ensuring the availability of renewable energy to the masses that is fast gaining popularity. Wind power and solar panels hold high hopes or reducing the use of fossil fuels, thereby making carbon-free energy available to the masses. The introduction of green roofs and cool roofs improve the home insulation and reduce energy bills through less use of utilities that lower the use of fossil fuels. Electric cars are likely to join the mainstream for creating a cleaner environment. All the efforts will lessen the heat that the world now has to face.
Putting an end to the digital divide
The opening of the internet that marked the beginning of the digital revolution has transformed the lives of millions of people across the world through improved connectivity that has paved the way for numerous technological solutions. But all is not as bright as it seems because large sections of the masses in developing countries are yet not able to access high-speed broadband that has remained elusive across regions and nations. It is severely affecting the economic growth of these nations as they are unable to participate in the global digital ecosystem and unable to avail of the benefits.
Companies are offering satellite-enabled Community Wi-Fi service to include more and more people in the developmental path. It will also help to overcome the problem and make the internet more accessible across all regions and nations. This has empowered people in isolated regions across the world as they can now access Wi-Fi hotspots via existing satellite networks of companies offering the service and become equal partners in progress with the people of other regions.
Reducing accidental deaths
Car accidents are the cause of the maximum number of accident-related deaths in the US that mostly affect the teens. Although such accidents are unintentional, the consequences are heartbreaking as every year, 1,36,000 people lose their lives in this way. The development of self-driving cars seems to have an answer to the problem because its great safety features eliminate the possibilities of human error that cause most of the car accidents and can save thousands of lives every year. The improvement in the technology of self-driving cars incorporates more sensitive alerts and automatic braking systems that can minimize the effects of distracted driving.
Unrestricted use of guns leads to many unwanted deaths in the US, and by using technology, it is possible to avoid casualties due to the irresponsible use of guns. Companies are working to develop a technology in identifying the user of the gun to prevent its unauthorized use of the weapon. Another technology aims at compelling gun users to wear a sensor without which the gun will not fire.
Improving the quality of education
The biggest hurdle in accessing quality education is the trend of offering a one size fits all teaching modules that rarely take care of the needs of the learners. The stereotype teaching puts immense stress on the students who are under pressure to learn new things every year despite not finding it interesting enough as it does not address their learning needs. Since learning styles can differ significantly from person to person, it is essential to create a personalized learning experience that ensures a positive outcome.
A step in this direction is the introduction of online courses by using advanced communication technology that allows flexible and more intense learning. The students can choose a curriculum that meets their learning needs and seek meaningful education that they can put to good use. Similarly, the use of robots in classrooms ensures standardized delivery of curriculum by the subject matter experts who have a good grasp on the subject.
Big data has drastically changed the working methods of industries that can gain accessible insights about customers that lead to a better understanding of their needs. The same techniques of data interrogation, when applied to publicly available records, help both private enterprises and governments gain a clearer understanding of how to deal with pressing social problems.
Pharmaceutical companies that engage in animal testing as part of the drug development process face tremendous pressure from animal charities and non-governmental organizations that work for animal welfare to reduce the number of tests on animals. By analyzing data from public records, pharmaceutical companies can now decide how to reduce the tests on animals by eliminating unwanted tests.
The instances stated above show how technology will change the world as it has done earlier to improve lives and make the world a better place for future generations.