Technology Implementation

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Can We Escape the Technology Trap?

Each major wave of technological advancement has proved to be a boon to society — at least eventually. But in the meantime, many people’s lives and jobs have faced unwelcome disruption. This week’s Three Big Points guest, Oxford economist Carl Frey, says it’s time to learn to move from resisting change to mitigating its most painful short-term impacts.

Why the ‘Just Do Something’ Strategy for AI Won’t Work

For all the giant leaps promised by artificial intelligence, when it comes to business, what we’ve seen so far amounts to just tiny steps. That’s not necessarily a bad thing; many smart people advise companies to start small with AI. But as Boston College professor Sam Ransbotham notes in this week’s Three Big Points podcast, when you think small, you get small results.

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Preparing for the Risky World of Extended Reality

  • Frontiers

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 9 min 

Technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality show great promise in fields like medicine and manufacturing, but they come with risks to individual and societal well-being that could be incredibly hard to reverse. Now is the time for business leaders to take measures to prevent, or at least mitigate, the potential downsides of such tools.

Designing AI Systems That Customers Won’t Hate

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 13 min 

Though autonomous technology has a large and growing range of potential applications, it also may threaten users’ sense of autonomy and free will, or their belief that they can decide how to pursue their lives freely. But companies can create systems users don’t hate by protecting users’ autonomy, unpredictability, and privacy.

An Executive Guide to the Winter 2020 Issue

MIT Sloan Management Review’s Winter 2020 issue explores the dilemmas managers face in using blockchain, machine learning, and marketing analytics effectively; strategies to recognize potential threats to your business; the underpinnings of successful organizational transformation; and meeting the emotional and educational needs of your employees.

You’re Going Digital — Now What?

Plotting digital change is heady, exciting stuff. But success depends less on inspiration at the 30,000-foot level than on the way people on the front lines implement new digital tools. Most leaders aren’t laying a foundation for employees to succeed, largely because they don’t have any idea what really happens at the ground level. To avoid that fate, they must understand the phases of digital adoption and then plan in reverse to create the right conditions.

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People-Centered Design Principles for AI Implementation

  • Video | Runtime: 0:59:03

As the AI field currently stands, deep learning is playing an increasingly critical role. As organizations begin adopting deep learning, leaders must ensure that these artificial neural networks are accurate and precise–lest they negatively affect business decisions and potentially hurt customers, products, and services.

Measuring Emotions in the Digital Age

  • Frontiers

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 6 min 

Employers have learned that their employees’ emotional states contribute to productivity, sales, and culture. But how do you measure emotions when self-reporting is often inaccurate because respondents either aren’t aware of or don’t want to report their emotions? Facial recognition technologies may hold the answer, but there are significant privacy concerns to be addressed.

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Blockchain Isn’t as Unbreakable as You Think

Between 2011 and 2018, at least 72 blockchain breaches were reported, costing users over $2 billion. Many of these were possible because blockchain is vulnerable in some of the same ways conventional record-keeping systems are. The rest are even more troubling, because bad actors were able to exploit the very features that make blockchain revolutionary. Managers should look closely at both types of vulnerabilities so they can weigh the risks before exploring business applications.

Learning From Automation Anxiety of the Past

  • Read Time: 6 min 

AI and automation might benefit society at large, but there will be losers in the process, and at times even outright resistance, if people feel that their jobs and incomes are threatened. To avoid a backlash against the technology, governments must address its social costs and pursue policies that kick-start productivity growth while helping workers adapt.

Overcoming Cultural and Technical Debt

Companies take on debts beyond just monetary ones that can be just as heavy as the greatest financial liabilities. Technical and cultural debt accrue as a byproduct of the decisions and investments companies make along their growth journeys, and both can weigh companies down. In this week’s episode of Three Big Points, Stanford’s Bob Sutton takes us inside ride-sharing giant Uber, an ideal case study.

Creating the Symbiotic AI Workforce of the Future

  • Frontiers

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 7 min 

To effectively implement AI, organizations will need to use human-centered AI processes that motivate and retrain workers, which shifts the focus from automation to collaboration between humans and machines. To test that idea, an experiment was designed to see how human workers might augment an existing AI system and embrace their new roles as AI trainers — resulting in a symbiotic system that enabled humans and AI to each work to their strengths.

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