Commitment #2 – As tech stewards, we seek to understand how our values are shaping and being shaped by the technologies we build and scale.
Once we acknowledge the value-infused nature of technology, the next question is how can we ensure it is “beneficial for all?”
Given that values are subjective, who gets to decide what is beneficial? And who and what should be considered? As tech stewards, rather than seek absolute answers to the question of what is beneficial for all, a more useful question becomes:
How intentional are we being about how our values shape and are shaped by technologies?
Answering this question requires considering multiple dimensions:
- How aware are we of our personal values and how they are being amplified by the technologies we help create and apply?
- How aware are we of the dominant values within our communities (professional, social, etc…)?
- How aware are we of the value tensions associated with specific technologies (for example the common tension between Data Privacy AND Data Sharing)?
- How aware are we of the value tensions between different levels: intrapersonal, personal, team, organizational, and societal?
- How well are we maintaining a dynamic balance amongst the values inherent in tech stewardship itself?
Tech stewardship means becoming more aware of the value tensions, and more adept at finding the potential within the tensions. But awareness is only the first step, we must also ensure that this awareness manifests in our behaviours.