Development 4.0: Opportunities and Challenges for Accelerating Progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific
Rapid advances in technology will profoundly affect societies in Asia-Pacific. The Fourth Industrial Revolution—characterised by innovations such as artificial intelligence, automation, and bio-technology—is likely to transform existing systems of production, management, and governance. How countries embrace and adapt to the coming technological changes will determine whether they meet the promise of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
UNDP partnered with the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) to review the likely implications of this technological revolution on progress towards the SDGs in the Asia-Pacific region. The resulting analysis identifies the region’s risk flashpoints, the channels through which risks might constrain SDG progress, and, critically, the ways that new technologies might be harnessed to advance rather than hinder sustainable development.
The Asia-Pacific region is diverse, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution will affect countries in different ways. But this report and the accompanying UNDP policy recommendations highlight critical areas where action now can boost a country’s ability to capitalize on opportunities arising from the inevitable technological change underway. It is up to each government to develop solutions appropriate to their own economic and social context. This report and recommendations aim to support this process, principally by identifying themes for further analysis and by guiding policy and institutional design that can help societies embrace the opportunities afforded by technological change and manage the possible negative consequences of it.