Emerging technologies are technologies that are perceived as capable of changing the status quo. These are technologies that are characterized by radical novelty, a relatively fast growth, a certain degree of coherence, persisting over time, and with the potential to exert a considerable impact on the socio-economic domain(s) which is observed in terms of the composition of actors, institutions and patterns of interactions among those, along with the associated knowledge production processes.
One of the main aspect of technology to be identified as emergent is its fast adoption, within a very short and generally recent period of time. However, the technology itself doesn’t necessarily have to be new. This can encompass older technologies that are still controversial and relatively undeveloped in potential. Sometimes these old technology gain momentum due to technological development or a paradigm shift into the thinking of both industrials and individuals.
The newly enacted law mandates that RURA regulates ICT, however, the ICT landscape is extremely evolving, the lifecycle of products is mere days, instead of years. With this high velocity of innovation, it becomes challenging for regulators to adapt, even to know what technologies are coming on the market, with potential destructive power. In this regards, RURA has taken a lead, in getting over the market, identifying emerging technologies and trying to craft regulatory frameworks before these technologies become mainstream.
The early stages of an emerging technology’s development present a unique opportunity to shape its future. But, it is an opportunity that does not remain open forever. Interests, investment, and opinion can quickly begin to vest around certain regulatory and governance expectations. It is important to put an appropriate governance system in place early in a technology’s developmental stages, and before the commitment to the status quo becomes too great.