We need the ability to trust that our future is more equitable and inclusive.
Technological innovation holds the potential to bring more broadly shared opportunity, economic growth, and personal freedom. While technology can be a powerful opportunity equalizer, for too long barriers have meant that some of the people who can benefit most are too often the people who have been left behind. To make progress, we need to start by rebuilding trust among historically disadvantaged communities, make sure technologies are more inclusive by design, and ensure that new products and services are designed for, and by, a more diverse group of people.
Everybody — regardless of income, geography, gender, disability, or background — needs the same opportunity to be connected to and participate in today’s digital economy. But too often, distrust has been driven by a growing inequity and unfairness in the system — or further amplified people who use technology to prey on vulnerable communities. To build trust, we need to more directly target fraud, malware, and malicious behavior targeted at the economically disadvantaged and people of color. To make our digital world more inclusive, we also need to tackle barriers and advance strategies that expand access to the skills needed to obtain the good paying jobs that the technology sector often creates, ensure technologies are designed and developed by a more diverse workforce, and improve access to capital to empower the entrepreneurs who have been left out and left behind.
These more inclusive steps can have profound benefits for companies and the economy too. Research shows that more diverse teams are more innovative and generate more revenue. Another study found that innovation would quadruple if women, people of color, and children from low-income families were able to invent at the same rate as other groups who are not held back by discrimination and other barriers. That’s why a more trusted future is a more equitable and inclusive future.