Future of Institutions Dialogue

Wednesday, July 20, 2022 10:00 AM EDT (UTC–04:00)
Private Event: Round Table

The data-driven economy (DDE) presents specific challenges for institutions. Data forms a powerful value chain: it is used with artificial technologies to create analytics that drive decision making. First movers in big data have tremendous advantage through economies of scale and scope, network effects and information asymmetries. This new paradigm has also created novel interconnected issues and vulnerabilities related to innovation, intellectual property, cybersecurity, personal privacy, democracy and national security.

Current DDE governance arrangements are incoherent and frag­mented nationally and internationally — where they even exist. More generally, governance arrangements are out of date, reflecting old industrial patterns and not those of the digital economy, and are incomplete or lacking, both nationally and internationally, where there is little effective collaboration and cooperation.

Further, many countries — including those in the Global South — are generally not even party to governance discussions that may be taking place, yet they are greatly affected by them. Indeed, as difficult as these issues are to manage at the domestic level, the situation is even more complicated at the international level where data flows virtually everywhere, but so too does the power of firms and jurisdictions to set their own rules over data uses that can be difficult to navigate and challenge. And at the international level, institutions typically mirror, in many respects, the organization followed by governments and so suffer from the same lack of coordination internally as well as across organizations.

The Future of Institutions series asks creative and impactful organizations, leaders and thinkers to come together to propose answers to two questions:

  • What new (or reborn) institutions will humanity need to build over the next 10 years to handle governance issues in the digital economy?
  • What innovations in how institutions work can serve as models for building — or rebuilding — these institutions, ensuring they can meet not only today’s challenges, but also future ones?

Event Speakers

Rohinton P. Medhora is a CIGI distinguished fellow, professor of practice at McGill University, and an expert in international economic relations, innovation policy, development economics and governance.

Robert (Bob) Fay is a CIGI senior fellow and an expert in the field of digital economy research.

Susan Ariel Aaronson is a CIGI senior fellow, research professor of international affairs at George Washington University and co-principal investigator with the National Science Foundation/National Institute of Standards and Technology, where she leads research on data and AI governance.

Dan Ciuriak is a senior fellow at CIGI, where he is exploring the interface between Canada’s domestic innovation and international trade and investment. He is the director and principal of Ciuriak Consulting, Inc.