IWDK Inside-Out: Sofie Hvitved from Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies

By Anne la Cour Thysen

In IWDK Inside-Out some of our great and amazing speakers, briefly, unfold their perspectives on tech and data in our society. Moreover, you’ll get a sneak peak on, what they are going to tell you about on their IWDK-event. 


This time, we have talked to Sofie Hvitved, Futurist, and Associated Partner, Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies. She develops and executes strategies and innovation projects, which deal with media, data, and technology. Sofie is hosting an event about, how algorithms influence the future communication, and media landscape. Sign up here!

Q: What do you connect with this year’s IWDK-theme “Trust & Tech // Today & Tomorrow?
A: I think, the words sum up the most important trends affecting our lives these years – also regarding communication, and media. Tech is changing the rules of our ecosystem, and trust in media is declining worldwide. How can we use tech to regain trust? In my opinion, automated trust is one of the most interesting perspectives on this issue.


Q: What are you going to talk about on your event at IWDK, and why do you want to contribute to networking and knowledge sharing during the festival?
A: Digitization and automation have a huge impact on our society, and the collection and use of data are exploding in the media landscape. How will the use of data and algorithms impact us? How do we ensure not to make the same mistakes, as we have seen in the tech industry? Where are the gaps for your company in the future in this area? I will share my insights in the hope of creating more awareness on, how the media of tomorrow is shaping – and how people working with media and communication can help to shape it!


Q: Which topics are you looking forward to dive into during IWDK? Are you attending other events at the festival?
A: This is my first year at IWDK, and being from Aarhus myself, I am really looking forward to see, what the conference can offer. So far, the program looks very inspiring with many different perspectives, and overall I am looking forward to be inspired. Of course, I am going to attend the official opening with Magrethe Vestager, and, also, I think that the Hardtalk-track seems like it could give some new interesting perspectives.


Q: What do you consider as the advantages about technology and ‘datafication’ in regard to the societal development?
A: Data holds the power to make massive changes in our society, and technology can help us in so many perspectives. Data and technology make knowledge accessible in a way never before possible. In a media perspective, we can create, verify, collect and distribute knowledge in new ways that – if done correctly – can elevate us as human beings.


Q: Which problem is important to concern in relation to the use and implementation of tech and data?
A: I believe that the technological development has the possibility to change our society for the better, but we have to be very aware of the pitfalls of the attention economy, and the possible misuse of data. An algorithm is never better than the logic by which it is coded, and the data by which it is trained. From Tiktok and Facebook to BBC’s Public Service Algorithm project and the Markup – the span in the use of algorithms in the media industry is massive. New technology, whether it is AI or something completely different, has to put humanity at the center of its use. So, how can we ensure algorithms that are for the betterment of society?

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