• This summit is promoted by Digital Future Society, an initiative by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Business and Mobile World Capital Barcelona
  • Digital Future Society tackles the challenges of digital transformation and seeks to generate agreements to improve technology governance


Madrid, 30 September 2019.- Digital Future Society, promoted by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Business and Mobile World Capital Barcelona (MWCapital), is an international initiative created to assess the impact of the technological revolution on society and the economy. Announced today in Madrid, a world summit on technology governance is to be held in Spain in 2020.

The goal of this forum is to analyse the major challenges surrounding technological transformation, establish recommendations, and seek public and private commitment to move forwards in better governance of the digital future and thus build a more inclusive, fair and sustainable society.

The event was attended by over 170 technology experts, scholars, government representatives and executives from major corporations, among others. It was brought to a close by Nadia Calviño, the acting Minister for Economy and Business. The event included the presentation of the project by Esteban Redolfi, Director of Digital Future Society, with the participation of Francisco Polo, acting Secretary of State for Digital Progress, and David Cierco, CEO of Red.es. Lastly, the meeting hosted speeches by Joanna Bryson, an expert in Artificial Intelligence and a world benchmark in the field of ethics and innovation policies, and Lorena Jaume-Palasí, Director of Algorithm Watch.


A collaborative network

Since it was established in 2018, Digital Future Society has included such renowned public figures as Mariana Mazzucato, an expert in technology and inclusive growth, Jeff Merritt, Director of the Internet of Things and robotics for the World Economic Forum, Andrew Axelrod, Strategy Director for the United Nations Foundation, and John Hoffman, CEO of GSMA Ltd., the company responsible for MWC, as members of its international committee of experts. Representatives of major technological corporations, such as Facebook, Microsoft, Mozilla and ConsenSys, also take part in the initiative.

They will all play a leading role in the meeting planned for 2020, which is to pose the needs, the challenges and the obligations in defining a new global governance.

More specifically, it is to discuss how to tackle a new regulation to guarantee citizens’ rights and obligations with regard to privacy and data management, how to fight the many different areas of the digital divide (connectivity, social exclusion, etc.), and the divisiveness associated to ethics in technology (decision making by artificial intelligence, for example).


Building a global debate

Alongside preparing for the summit, Digital Future Society is working on producing contents that promote reflection through different working groups that discuss the four pivotal elements of the initiative: public innovation, equitable growth, security and digital trust, as well as social inclusion and citizen empowerment.

Four working groups have met during 2019, two of which have already completed their work with the publication of a report. The first, Where emerging tech meets government, suggests a new scenario in public policies, and the second, Towards better data governance for all, discusses the ethics of data and privacy. Eight new meetings are planned for 2020, with the corresponding associated publications.