Silicon Valley has a solution for everything, but who do its ideas really serve? Every Thursday, Paris Marx is joined by a new guest to critically examine the tech industry, its thought leaders, and the worldview it spreads. They challenge the notion that tech alone can drive our world forward by showing that separating tech from politics has consequences for us all, especially the most vulnerable. But if tech won't save us, what will? This podcast isn't simply about tearing tech down; it also presents radical ideas for tech designed for human flourishing instead of surveillance, acquisitions, or to boost stock prices. A better world is possible, and so is better technology.
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How Tech is Remaking the Food System w/ Jim Thomas
Paris Marx is joined by Jim Thomas to discuss how digital technologies are being integrated into the industrial food system, how it empowers agribusiness firms and major tech companies, and its implications for farmers and farm workers.
Jim Thomas is the research director at ETC Group, which has over 25 years international experience tracking the impact of emerging technologies on human rights, biodiversity, equity and food systems. Follow Jim on Twitter at @jimetc.
Tech Won’t Save Us offers a critical perspective on tech, its worldview, and wider society with the goal of inspiring people to demand better tech and a better world. Follow the podcast (@techwontsaveus) and host Paris Marx (@parismarx) on Twitter, support the show on Patreon, and sign up for the weekly newsletter.
The podcast is produced by Eric Wickham and part of the Harbinger Media Network.
Also mentioned in this episode:
- ETC Group recently released its Food Barons 2022 report, providing a snapshot of the world’s the biggest players up and down the industrial food and agriculture chain, with a lot of insight on the use of technologies throughout the food system.
- The war in Ukraine is only exacerbating preexisting problems in the global food system.
- The Gates Foundation uses its vast wealth to shape the global food system so it works as Bill Gates wants it to and benefits major agribusiness and tech companies. Groups in Africa have long been speaking out about Gates’ plans for agriculture on the continent.
- The UN finds that food systems are responsible for 80% of deforestation, 29% of emissions, and a leading share of biodiversity loss. It also reports that 70% of the world’s agricultural land is owned by 1% of all farms, mainly large agribusiness firms.