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Robbie Carlton - AI and the Relational Economy of the Future (EP003)
Episode 38th February 2024 • Relational Conversations • MetaRelating
00:00:00 01:50:27

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This episode’s guest, Robbie Carlton, is the host of The Sane and Miraculous podcast. 

Robbie and our host, Michael Porcelli, were one-time colleagues who trained facilitators in the relational practice called Circling. Robbie and Porch also bring their long-shared interest in computing, science, philosophy, and consciousness to this wide-ranging conversation exploring the influence of artificial intelligence on economic sectors reliant on human relationships, such as therapy, coaching, and education. They also speculate on future ethical dilemmas, including AI sentience and rights.

They delve into how increasing digital interactions through remote work and social media are changing our social world, especially as AI agents become more prevalent in our daily lives. Do we risk further isolation and loss of human connection? What constraints on these trends are needed to preserve the essential aspects of our humanity? 

On the flip side, they discuss how AI could relieve us from mundane tasks, allowing more time for enjoying human connection, creative expression, and solving engaging problems. Are there limits to how much of human economic activity can become experiential and relational? 

Key Takeaways

  • The future of work may involve a shift towards the experiential and relational economy, where people find meaning and value in human-to-human interactions.
  • Automation has the potential to disrupt the economy and lead to a redistribution of wealth, with professions focused on human connection becoming highly valued.
  • The economic and governance systems may need to evolve to ensure a fair distribution of resources and to support the growth of the relational economy.
  • Relational work has the potential to become primarily what most people do for a living.
  • While AI has the potential to enhance certain aspects of human interaction, there are limitations to its ability to replicate the depth and complexity of human connection.
  • How the unpredictable nature of relationships is essential to what makes them fulfilling..
  • Automating rote work can free up time for more meaningful activities and human connection.
  • The possibility that AI will perform rote forms of emotional labor
  • In a screen-mediated social world, it is important to develop and prioritize relational skills.




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