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Ben Reid - Te Hono Speaker Series 7th June 2024

Ben Reid - Te Hono Speaker Series 7th June 2024

AI, Exponential technologies and the future of New Zealand's economy

Te Hono Speaker Series: World-class speakers discuss key themes in a webinar format. (See other speakers here:​

In this webinar, Memia Director of Future technology and foresight Ben Reid explores How AI and exponential technologies are defining the future of New Zealand's economy... and what we can do about it.

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Ben Reid^AI

Facilitated by David Downs.

Watch the video below or stream on Vimeo (starts with a traditional Māori Karakia 4 minutes in):

AI Generated Summary

(Generated by Claude 3 Opus)

Summary of the "AI, Exponential Technology and the Future of New Zealand's Economy" webinar:

The webinar, held on June 7th, 2024 at 8:15am, was organised by Te Hono and featured speaker Ben Reid discussing the latest developments in AI and exponential technology and their potential impact on New Zealand's economy. Key points covered:

  1. AI and exponential technologies are advancing rapidly, with innovation cycles compressing. This acceleration needs to be considered in economic planning.

  2. Generative AI has made significant strides in the past year, enabling the creation of text, images, video, and audio that is often indistinguishable from human-created content. This has implications for content creation, design, and productivity.

  3. AI agents and answer engines are emerging, able to break down complex tasks and provide summaries and research quickly. This could significantly boost productivity across industries.

  4. Robotics is advancing, with autonomous vehicles, robots in healthcare/hospitality, and humanoid robots becoming more sophisticated. This may impact labour and society.

  5. New Zealand faces strategic choices regarding its economic future and technology strategy. Focusing on knowledge-intensive, complex products and maintaining technological sovereignty through open-source models are potential paths forward.

  6. Doubling New Zealand's exports in 10 years amid global challenges will require careful consideration of what products and services to focus on. Reducing bulk/weight and increasing information content could be advantageous.

  7. Boards should consider implementing AI usage policies balancing innovation and risk. The education sector may need to adapt as AI democratises access to knowledge.

  8. The energy demands of exponential technologies are a concern that needs to be addressed, potentially through renewable energy, nuclear fusion, or space-based solar.

The webinar concluded with a Q&A session and a book giveaway. Ben emphasised the need for New Zealand to engage in a mainstream discussion about these technologies and develop a national technology strategy.

Memia by Ben Reid
Memia Podcasts
Conversations about emerging tech and the future with leading technologists and innovators.