President Stubb at Summit for Democracy: “We need to learn how to use technology for the benefit of us all and for freedom”

President of the Republic of Finland Alexander Stubb participated online in the third Summit for Democracy on Wednesday 20 March 2024. This year, the Summit was hosted by President of South Korea Yoon Suk Yeol under the theme “Democracy for future generations”.

President Stubb spoke at the virtual Summit plenary titled “Technology, Election and, Mis-/Disinformation.” In his speech, he said that while after the Cold War there was a belief that democracy was spreading rapidly around the world and that technology could support this process, today there are also many challenges.

“The cold reality, however, is that technology can also be used for bad. It can be used for surveillance, it can be used for dictatorship. We saw that especially during COVID. And that is why I think it is very important that we democracies learn how to use technology in the right way for the benefit of us all and for freedom.”

Another of President Stubb’s remarks was that there are challenges in adapting democracy to the new world.

Paraphrasing psychologist Daniel Kahneman, the President said that democratic processes represent contemplating, slow, reflective and compromising thinking, as opposed to fast, reactive and emotional thinking. “We have to adapt to the new world. If we do not have a basic understanding of facts and information, we cannot have democratic discourse. And we see that challenge in many of our democracies.”

At the end of his speech, President Stubb said that it would be useful for us to get a set of recommendations that we could look at on how to work on the interconnection between democracy and technology.

“Basically a report or a to do list where we look at the problems that technology gives us in form of disinformation, misinformation and the challenges, and then what kind of solutions we could have.”

“Democracy is still the best way and the best form of governance as long as it is free, equal and supports justice.”

More news

More news