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Working the Future blog: our latest insights and future of work sensemaking

Sensemaking: The Power of the Humanities (in the age of the Algorithm) – Christian Madsbjerg, 2017

2022-03-08 15:41

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Reading Room, Sensemaking: The Power of the Humanities (in the age of the Algorithm), Christian Madsbjerg,

Sensemaking: The Power of the Humanities (in the age of the Algorithm) – Christian Madsbjerg, 2017

"What are people for? Algorithms can do many things, but they will never actually give a damn. People are for caring.”

"What are people for? Algorithms can do many things, but they will never actually give a damn. People are for caring.”

Wow. Madsbjerg offers up a fresh and alternative view to the dystopia of a future without work. He argues that for too long business has been transfixed by a two-dimensional purely financial and analytical approach, and the singular measuring stick of financial performance. He posits that as business increasingly battles against fickle and “unpredictable” consumers, understanding the context of customer habits and behaviours has never been more important.

This is the battle of “thin” quantitative data (the kind Silicon Valley seems in love with, and the kind that AI is contingent upon) versus “thick” qualitative data. Context is everything he says and is key to competitive edge.  Furthermore, it’s the one area where algorithms will struggle to make a dent for some significant time to come, so an obvious area for humans to focus on. ​​

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