FuturICT Vision for the Social Sciences, ICT & Complexity Science
FutureICT have submitted their proposal to the FET Flagship Programme, an initiative that aims to facilitate breakthroughs in information technology. The vision of FutureICT is to
integrate the fields of information and communication technologies (ICT), social sciences and complexity science, to develop a new kind of participatory science and technology that will help us to understand, explore and manage the complex, global, socially interactive systems that make up our world today, while at the same time paving the way for a new paradigm of ICT systems that will leverage socio-inspired self-organisation, self-regulation, and collective awareness.
The project could provide us with profound insights into societal behaviour and improve policymaking. The project echoes the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in its scope and vision, only here we are trying to understand the state of the world. The FutureICT project combines the creation of a 'Planetary Nervous System' (PNS) where Big Data will be collated and organised, a 'Living Earth Simulator' (LES), and the 'Global Participatory Platform' (GPP). The LES will simulate the data and provide models for analysis, while the GPP will provide the data, models and methods to everyone. People wil be able to collaborate and research in a very different way. The availability of Big Data to participants will both strengthen our ability to understand complex socio-economic systems, and it could help build a new dialogue between nations in how we solve complex global societal challenges.
FutureICT aim to develop a 'Global Systems Science', which will
lay the theoretical foundations for these platforms, while the focus on socio-inspired ICT will use the insights gained to identify suitable designs for socially interactive systems and the use of mechanism that have proven effective in society as operational principles for ICT systems.
It is exciting to think about the possible breakthroughs that could be made. What new insights and scientific discoveries could be made? What new technologies could emerge? The Innovation Accelerator (IA) is one feature of the venture that could create both disruptive technology and politics. Next year will open up a new world of possibilities.