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How the Software Revolution Is Changing Our World

Software will dramatically change our lives and our society. We are in the midst of dramatic societal changes driven by software — a revolution propelled by software innovation.

As chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council (GAC) on the Future of Software and Society, I work with experts from business, academia, and development backgrounds to identify and analyze how today’s advancements in software are shaping the world around us. Our Council has released a new report, “Deep Shift: 21 Ways Software Will Transform Global Society.” The report describes software innovation and highlights predictions about the many ways in which software will change our lives and our world. So much of what we do is enabled by software: From building smarter cities by analyzing traffic patterns, to providing rural farmers from Indiana to India with real-time mobile data to improve their harvests, the software revolution is transforming the way we live.

These developments do not come without challenges. Our Council’s mission is to help society navigate these changes, both positive and negative. How can we best address societal impacts related to privacy, security, and job disruption? Greater collaboration between industry, policymakers, academia, and citizens of the world will help us chart our course through these software innovations that are poised to dramatically change our lives.

To read the entire “Deep Shift: 21 Ways Software Will Transform Global Society” report, click here.

Victoria Espinel

Author:

Victoria Espinel is a respected authority on the intersection of technology innovation, global markets and public policy. She leads strategic efforts that help shape the technology landscape in 60 countries through work in BSA’s 10 global offices.

Espinel also serves as the President of Software.org: the BSA Foundation. Software.org is an independent and nonpartisan international research organization created to help policymakers and the broader public better understand the impact that software has on our lives, our economy, and our society.

Espinel served for a decade in the White House, for both Republican and Democratic Administrations as President Obama’s advisor on intellectual property and, before that, as the first ever chief US trade negotiator for intellectual property and innovation at USTR. She was also a professor of international trade and intellectual property at the George Mason School of Law.

Espinel is a founding and ongoing co-sponsor of Girls Who Code’s Washington, DC, summer immersion program, which empowers young women to pursue careers in STEM fields. She speaks before audiences around the world to build visibility for the amazing things people can do with software, and encourages businesses, governments, and the public to support a policy environment that will enable even more software breakthroughs.

Espinel chairs the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on the Digital Economy and Society. She was appointed by President Obama to serve on the Advisory Committee on Trade Policy and Negotiations (ACTPN), the principal advisory group for the US government on international trade. She holds an LLM from the London School of Economics, a JD from Georgetown University Law School, and a BS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. Follow her on Twitter: @victoriaespinel.

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