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For automation to benefit society it must serve human beings—not replace them

Advances in artificial intelligence call us to revisit basic questions about work, love and human purpose.

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

For automation to benefit society it must serve human beings—not replace them

Advances in artificial intelligence call us to revisit basic questions about work, love and human purpose.

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

This week's editor

Rosemary Belcher-2.jpg

Rosemary Bechler is openDemocracy’s Editor.

Call for participants: Syria, Middle East Forum

يبحث موقع openDemocracy عن مشاركين لمنتدى الشرق الأوسط  لسوريا.

openDemocracy is looking for participants for the Middle East Forum for Syria.

Call for participants: Egypt, Middle East Forum

يبحث موقع openDemocracy عن مشاركين لمنتدى الشرق الأوسط  في مصر.

openDemocracy is looking for participants for the Middle East Forum for Egypt.

Call for applications: Middle East Forum Program Expansion Consultant

openDemocracy is looking for a Program Expansion Consultant to advise and support the expansion of the Middle East Forum project.

Subverting neoliberal slavery: migrant struggles against labour exploitation in Italy

In response to these conditions we are witnessing cumulative processes of politicization – struggles and organization involving migrant workers and activists setting out to build awareness locally, and link up globally.     

'Faith and family': shrinking common ground at the UNCSW

The Worldwide Organization for Women took a hard line against all forms of comprehensive sexual education, often provided by UN bodies, highlighting ideological differences within the CSW.

Injustice is the foundation of the new Turkish state

With the media focusing on Erdogan’s April referendum, it is easy to lose sight of, or cover up, the tensions and serious abuses in the Kurdish areas in the south-east of the country.

Populism and fraternity in Portugal

There are moments of truth in which, due to some sort of blip in the functioning of the oligarchic system that governs our present world, we glimpse another humane populism.

What causes the populist infection? How can it be cured?

In all countries, established political parties have the dangerous propensity to counter this electoral wave of populism by adopting the issues and language used by them.

The Orban regime takes Horthy’s Hungary as an example

One 1941 law passed under the ultra-nationalist and Nazi collaborator Miklos Horthy banned all forms of sexual intercourse between Jews and Gentiles in the name of ethnic purity.

The new UNSG is poised to show the world what a feminist looks like

There has been real progress at this year's UN Commission on the Status of Women, and the new Secretary General has asked women around the world to "keep our feet to the fire". 

The European University at St Petersburg: no license to learn?

The European University at St Petersburg has had its education license revoked. What’s next for one of Russia’s top higher education institutions? Русский

Donald Trump’s proposal to slash UN funding: a threat to international peace and security

In a clear signal of priorities, Trump called for a $52 billion increase in defense spending, the US already spending nearly as much as the next 14 countries combined.

Bengal residents resist hazardous power grid amid repression

In January, police in Bhangar, West Bengal, shot two people dead as residents of the village protested a dangerous and unwanted electrical grid.

Time for the west to fight for the exiled

Today’s autocrats are displaying a growing audacity in their willingness to pursuing dissenters everywhere, blatantly disregarding national boundaries in the process.

Postscript to a letter to extremists

We can defeat extremism by building something beautiful together.

Sarajevo 25 years after: paradigm for the future

The dynamic and sometimes dramatic interplay between the essence and the fate of a city provides the key for a wholesome national reintegration process.

Are NHS staff really getting happier, despite everything?

Or is their goodwill being stretched to breaking point? The latest surveys of NHS staff paint a mixed picture.

Why Macron should give us hope of democratic renewal in France

François Fillon’s (LR) entanglements in corruption scandals and Benoît Hamon’s (PS) strategy to court the votes of the far left have helped Macron to emerge as the strongest candidate.

The Czech Republic gives up on the EU – and foreign policy

Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek is justified in lamenting economic inequality and low pay, but his EU-bashing conveniently hides the fact that his own government has done little to address them.

In a peaceful Colombia, violence continues to displace populations

The transition to a stable and just situation will take time. At the moment, it is difficult to generate confidence in some people who are too used to be victims. Español

Republicans move to break with the United Nations

Republicans are revisiting a move to withdraw from the United Nations and related human rights treaties—what would this really mean? A contribution to the openGlobalRights debate on Trump and Human Rights.

The banality of terrorism

Current responses seem to normalise terrorism – cementing it into the everyday reality of daily life, in the same way that we accept poverty, homelessness or inequality. The way things are.

A new agenda for facilitating human mobility after the UN summits on refugees and migrants

Mobility is key to development and prosperity, and with the proper vision we can make broader legal pathways for migration work for everyone.

Argentina: laboratory of the New Right

March 24 commemorates the coup d'état of 1976 and was designated national holiday in 2002. Macri wanted to abolish it, but had to back down in front of protests of the public. Español

What 'Citizen Bannon' misremembered and misread on his way to guiding Trump

What 'Citizen Bannon' misremembered and misread on his way to guiding Trump.

For automation to benefit society it must serve human beings—not replace them

Advances in artificial intelligence call us to revisit basic questions about work, love and human purpose.

Washington's wars: in a fix

A distracted Trump administration is unable to focus even on its own anti-ISIS summit.

Northern Ireland provides just one of many loopholes for dark-money to flow into British elections

It's not just Northern Ireland's dodgy party donation rules that need an overhaul - across the UK, privacy prevails.

When governments fail to defend the economic realm, citizens revolt

The subordination of society to self-regulating international markets is the reason why British workers and industries so often fall prey to predatory financiers, writes Ann Pettifor. It is also a fun...

Taking the battle for civic space online

As online spaces become increasingly restricted, human rights activists must stay aware of the risks and benefits of technological developments. A contribution to openGlobalRights’ closing space for civil society debate. Español.