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Assoc Prof Feida Zhu on falling trust in innovation

SMU Associate Professor of Computer Science Zhu Feida commented on the 2024 Edelman Trust Barometer. The survey by global public relations firm Edelman found that over half of people here believe that society and technology are changing too quickly and in ways that do not benefit them. More than one in four Singapore respondents also believe innovation is poorly managed, while 24 per cent say it is well managed. Noting Singaporeans’ declining confidence in how innovation is being managed, Assoc Prof Zhu said it underscores respondents’ broader anxiety about how technology that makes life easier may not translate to fairness. Also, those aged between 18 and 35 may use more technology but are aware of the vulnerabilities of using AI, for instance, and would hence express more resistance towards innovation rather than the older or less well-off respondents. He urges more transparency among industry leaders and government about the risks and benefits of technology and less emphasis on the advantages so that people are not shocked when there are issues with the technology. Assoc Prof Zhu is also the Associate Dean of Partnerships and Engagement of SMU's School of Computing and Information Systems.