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Algorithm appointed board director

A venture capital firm has appointed a computer algorithm to its board of directors.

The program - called Vital - will vote on whether to invest in a specific company or not.

The firm it will be working for - Deep Knowledge Ventures - focuses on drugs for age-related diseases.

It said that Vital would make its recommendations by sifting through large amounts of data.

Future of policy-making and Futurium

Robert Madelin is the Director General of the DG for Communications Networks, Content and Technology in the European Commission. DG CONNECT is responsible for managing the European Commission's digital agenda. It helps to harness information and communications technologies in order to create jobs and generate economic growth; to provide better goods and services for all; and to build on the greater empowerment which digital technologies can bring in order to create a better world, now and for future generations.
He previously served in a variety of postings in the EC. He was Director General for Health and Consumer Policies (2004-10), and between 1997-2003 he was Director in the DG for Trade, working on access to medicines, agriculture, biotechnology, corporate responsibility, food and product standards, global governance, intellectual property, investment, services, sustainable development, and relations with the Asia-Pacific. Prior to this, he was Deputy Head of Cabinet to Sir Leon (now Lord) Brittan, European Commission Vice-President.

Video abstract: 

In this video interview about Futurium and the future of policy-making, Robert Madelin addresses the following questions:

  1. What do you think policy-making will look like in Europe in 2050?
  2. How do you see initiatives like Futurium playing a role in this vision? What impact will they have on our future Public Administration and policy-makers?
  3. It’s almost time to celebrate Futurium’s first birthday – looking back on the last year, what would you say are the three most important achievements and/or lessons learned from this pilot? 
  4. Futurium has engaged with around 2200 stakeholders and close to 1200 Futurizens on the platform and it is now rich with more than 200 co-created visions of the future (and the content is still growing!). What are the next steps in the process? What is going to happen to these visions and how will they be used by policy-makers?

To watch or listen to this interview, please click on the video on the right of this page. A synthesis report is also available for download below.

Leading Picture: 
Name Interviewee: 
Robert Madelin
Almost 1 year since the launch of Futurium, Robert Madelin, Director General of DG CONNECT, looks back at the lessons learned from the pilot project and thinks about its implications for the future of policy-making.
Interview Record: 
YouTUBE Screenshot: 

OECD Science, Technology and Industry Scoreboard


Published every two years, the STI Scoreboard analyses the major trends in knowledge and innovation in today’s global economy. Through statistical indicators it presents a policy-oriented review of science, technology, innovation and industrial performance in OECD and major non-OECD countries

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Sarah Oates reports:

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EurActiv's informal polls indicate 2/3 EU policy stakeholders are not satisfied with current policy-making tools. They agree that social media has increased transparency, but this is not yet the case for accessibility and efficiency.

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