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Public Engagement in Experiential Futures



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Technology

Quantified self has become a tool to develop an advantage for many newcomers with regards to breaking into the labor economy. Health and activity tracking is used to showcase not only the skills newcomers have but their performance capacity as well. Because of this, many newcomers are pushing themselves harder and harder to outperform their newcomer peers.

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Alongside the many labor jobs, many social services have also been automated. While this has helped streamline access to services for many, some newcomers experience the opposite. Many of the automated services were designed without the emerging complex needs of new newcomer groups. Because of this, many newcomer groups end up suffering due to lack of access or end up coming up with their own solutions to the services they need.

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The ability to work remotely with ease benefits affluent newcomers with access to devices that can be connected to mobile working platforms, allowing them to find and even create work for themselves through democratized online service / trade bartering systems. This also allows them to save expenses by living outside of the downtown core without the need for commute. Newcomers without access to such digital resources, however, are further driven out to find informal means for precarious work outside of the system, as well as being subjected to high living expenses in the downtown core.

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Digital connectivity associated with all aspects of living has become a norm, and newcomers must subscribe to constant surveillance through data tracking that is inherent to the provision of any support services by the government. More so, automated quantitative evaluation now determines the services that newcomers are able to receive, thus concretizing gaps between rich and poor, even within the newcomer community, through automated analytics algorithms. Although blockchain technology makes it difficult to erase digital ledgers tied to newcomer activity and corresponding digital identities, a growing community of hackers have found ways to manipulate devices and data as means to exploit affluent newcomers for digital identity “upgrades” in order to access higher quality lifestyle services.

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Automation and AI has replaced most of the previously low-skilled jobs, and is also impacting the market of professional jobs, resulting in high levels of unemployment that is now commonplace within the shifting nature of work. Newcomers must leverage their own networks to find work, creating gaps in opportunity distribution between those with more knowledge and / or equity, and those without. Newcomers’ entrepreneurship, knowledge, and values are tested as they compete with each other for precarious work as means for survival.

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