But while technological progress holds great promise, the speed and pace of the disruptions it creates have not been matched with the regulatory legal framework, creating gaps in the protection offered by these mechanisms.

Controversies surround technology companies and non-state actors regarding personal data misuse, surveillance and election interferences, are causing citizens to take a more critical look at technological developments and applications. Furthermore, the risk for some of being disconnected and unable to participate in modern economic or political activities is now acute, with participation conditional to digital access and literacy.

Against this backdrop, governments, civil society actors and technology-led companies need to adapt and work together to safeguard citizen’s rights, improve access, enforce inclusion, accountability and transparency. Yet, the worlds of technological innovation and international policy seem dangerously riven by differing outlooks and priorities.

Sitting at the heart of the institute with Chatham House Director’s Office, this initiative serves as a catalyst and draws on a cross-departmental, multi-disciplinary approach. It brings together policy and technology communities to help forge a common understanding and jointly address the challenges that rapid advances in technology are causing for domestic and international politics.

The DSI aims to maximise the full potential of this century’s most influential technological developments through solution-driven policy recommendations supports a sustainably secure, prosperous and just world.

Its objectives are to bridge competing objectives, build shared interest, common commitment, and forge new coalitions to accelerate the benefits that advances in technology can offer to societies across the world. It will pursue these objectives by:

  • Initiating debates and providing trusted evidence and insightful analysis to spark innovative ideas and solutions. 
  • Connecting the technology and policy communities, providing a safe space for debating and sharing best practices.  discussions.
  • Influencing through research activities and publications to increase collective knowledge and shape agendas.
  • Implementing new partnerships and piloting policy interventions to build inclusive digital societies

The initiative focuses on three interconnected research areas where new technologies hold great promises for human welfare and offer new solutions to complex global problems.

  • Inclusive Technology Governance
  • Sustainable and Equitable Growth
  • Emerging Threats and Human Safety