The explosion of new technologies has opened up new opportunities to improve health services, explained Eric Loeb, Executive Vice President of Government Affairs for Salesforce, LLC. Positioning the discussion at the intersection of science and policy, Loeb asked Undersecretary General Amandeep Singh Gill, Under-Secretary-General, Special Envoy on Technology, United Nations, to explain the most important challenges in the field. Gill noted a distinct lack of trust among people and a lack of cooperation in addressing planetary challenges.
Gill noted that the priorities in his position are to prevent fragmentation, strengthen digital inclusion, and ensure the Internet remains open. He also mentioned his intention that the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals should address the digital divide for the 3 billion people still not connected to the Internet. Pushing on the idea of digital transformation, Loeb asked for recommendations in managing the process. Gill suggested that digital transformations need to remain human-centric, with rights, freedom, and agency remaining at their core. The discussion then moved to ways in which governments can work with companies to provide constituent services and other benefits to citizens. Closing the session, Loeb and Gill spoke about potential healthcare applications for new technologies. There will be challenges in democratizing access but new technology is necessary for the “moonshots” required to address today’s major issues like climate change, pandemics, cancer rates, and global hunger.
“If you are not counted, you are invisible. They are people missing from the digital space […] so we need to make sure that invisibility is addressed.”
Amandeep Singh Gill, Under-Secretary-General, Special Envoy on Technology, United Nations
“The traditional view would have been that talent has to come to the work and after a couple of years of people working in very remote ways there is this very changed recognition that the work can go to the talent. This has an amazing democratizing effect on opportunity.”
Eric Loeb, Executive Vice President of Government Affairs, Salesforce, LLC Inc.