“Technology can allow us to invent a new sustainable growth model that respects our environment”

Grandstand. Science is now suspected of having contributed to leading humanity down a slippery slope, particularly with a view to restoring natural balances. Its daughter – technology – is the subject of unequivocal condemnation, particularly in France! Thus, 56% of French people agree to find her guilty.

Guilty of what? but a bit of everything: first of all global warming, then automation that would destroy jobs, not to mention the threats that could weigh on freedoms by combining social networks and artificial intelligence, etc.

Social acceptability

It is not the first time that science and technology have caused fear, but recent news and the Covid have given this old angst a new dimension. From 5G to robots, innovation is not only suspect but even seen as harmful…

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Humanity, however, has very few tools to face the challenges that beset it and technology is undoubtedly one of them. It is even one of the few who can enable us to invent a new model of sustainable growth, respectful of our environment and combining modernity and sobriety. Indeed, let us be wary of nostalgia for a pure and simple return to the ways of life of yesteryear: who can wish to return to the frightening rates of mortality, especially infant mortality, which characterized it?

Likewise, do we believe it is possible to reindustrialize our country with our level of wages and social protection without investing in new technologies and even, like Germany or South Korea, in robots? Genetic engineering, quantum computing, data analysis to treat better, to educate better, new energies, the avenues opened up by research work are richer than ever.

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Since technology and its consequences are now associated with the ever-sensitive wounds resulting from the great wave of globalization, or the rise of inequalities, or even the loss of social mobility, let us look for ways to restore their social acceptability.

Technology can and must rhyme with productivity, but also with employment and not with unemployment

As a counterpart to the precautionary principle, let’s start by debating and then by drafting what an innovation charter should be. Let’s demonstrate its contribution in terms of growth while setting out the rules that must be imposed to make it responsible and sustainable growth. Technology can and must rhyme with productivity, but also with employment and not with unemployment. And let’s agree to review together the new regulations that are required!

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