Bridging the Science-Society Gap in Controversial Technologies
Traditional economic sectors like agriculture and mining are still crucial to Canada’s economic and social fabric—and they are undergoing a digital revolution.
The Canadian government is confident that innovations like the use of big data will drive economic growth and social well-being. But if the digitization of agriculture and mining is not governed properly, it could amplify economic divides in regions—making it as polarizing as it is empowering.
Democratic governments have a mandate to govern innovation-led societal shifts responsibly. But social scientists have not systematically determined the effects of digitization in traditional sectors like agriculture and mining, making responsible governance an impossible task.
Dr. Kelly Bronson, Canada Research Chair in Science and Society, is focusing her research at the nexus of science, society and policy. She and her research team aim to empower those who design and govern innovations in data and machine intelligence so they can anticipate a variety of societal needs and concerns and incorporate them into their work. They plan to do this through in-depth qualitative engagements with designers and end-users as well as participatory and open innovation and decision processes that bring these social groups together.
Ultimately, Bronson’s research aims to create regenerative and just food and energy systems in Canada.