Contains Artificial Intelligence


When I first started working for MSW Management, the extent of my waste management knowledge was that I took our full bins down to the curb Tuesday mornings and then brought them back empty behind the garage in the afternoon. Of course, I learned on day one that there’s an entire waste and recycling universe that exists beyond my curb. Just about every day, I found out that there was more beyond the horizon than what I already knew.

I’ve come to consider waste management as one of the pillars of civilization. I’ve also developed a need to constantly expand my view of the horizon. What am I getting at? What if I were to tell you that artificial intelligence (AI) will play a significant role in shaping the future in every sphere of endeavor?

The International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) is a global professional federation of societies and associations for people working in Information and Communications Technologies and Sciences. It’s based in Austria and brings together more than 3,500 scientists from industry and academia around the world, organizing them into over 100 Working Groups and 13 Technical Committees to conduct research, develop standards, and promote information sharing. IFIP organizes and supports over 100 conferences each year, promoting the distribution of research and knowledge to academics and industry practitioners.

This week, IFIP board director Stephen Ibaraki presented to the United Nations how AI and machine-learning technologies will change the world. Ibaraki says, “AI innovation will be central to the achievement of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and help to solve humanity’s grand challenges, capitalizing on the unprecedented quantities of data now being generated on human health, commerce, communications, transportation, migration, and more.”

Ibaraki will explain the concept of “C-5-A” where human Cognition is replaced or enhanced by Algorithms, AI Assistance, Augmentation, Automation, and Autonomous intelligence. He will also share predictions that suggest AIs will drive a 55% gain in GDP between 2017 and 2030.

China is currently leading the race to develop commercial AIs and is set to achieve a 26% rise in GDP (worth $7 trillion) by 2030, followed by North America with an increase of 14.5% of GDP or $3.7 trillion.

“Machine learning and reasoning can extend medical care to remote regions through automated diagnosis and effective exploitation of limited medical expertise and transportation resources,” he says. “AI will also serve as a key resource in curbing greenhouse gas emissions in urban environments and supporting the development of smart cities, while global partnerships will offer crucial support to our pursuit of all of these goals involving the UN family, governments, industry, academia, civil society, and more.”

If you want to find out more about the IFIP and the United Nations’ sustainable development goals, check out their website,

Let’s not put the bin out on the curb without thinking about what happens beyond that.



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