Social Credit may become a more powerful determinant of socio-economic inclusion: Rating a user’s credibility/trust (social credit), as is currently done by Uber, eBay and many others, is becoming more common. At the same time, new technologies such as blockchain bring new ways of capturing and assessing more information. Together, these developments could lead to new ways of evaluating who should qualify for credit and services, based on algorithms. But there is also the risk for social rating systems to isolate individuals who do not fit into normalized standards of behaviour (e.g. the mentally ill). By 2030, government and stakeholders may need to address new forms of vulnerability and inequality that arise from how we determine “good” and “bad” social behavior.
Links between ownership and social status are becoming unstable: Traditionally, owning expensive goods was a status symbol. If people are able to access solutions rather than buy expensive assets, then this loses meaning. Pay-per-use models could undercut the economic incentive to own goods. Canadians might then take on less debt to live the same or better lifestyles. Status may be reflected instead by accessing products that are difficult to rent or share. In this new environment, reputation might become a new form of “wealth” that could be both more accessible and prone to fluctuations. These forces put pressure on the previously strong link between ownership and social status.
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